A hostess is within her rights to ask guests to remove their shoes — especially if it's snowing or raining outside. If it makes you uncomfortable, bring an extra pair of your own shoes so you won't have to go barefoot. In fact, she should offer slippers so you won't be cold or embarrassed. That said, a good hostess should be flexible. If she doesn't know her guests well or is having a big party, she should suspend the no-shoes rule, at least for one night.
The Good Housekeeping magazine has consistently been very favourable towards the idea of a shoes-off rule.