Sunday, December 29, 2013

What does Good Housekeeping say?

Good Housekeeping: When It's Okay to Ask Guests to Take Off Their Shoes


Q. Is it all right to ask guests to remove their shoes? I hate cleaning up the dirt, salt, and mud that get tracked in.

Answer
For a casual get-together, it's fine to ask guests (nicely) to take off their shoes.

P.S. If you can, try to have extra pairs of nonskid socks or slippers on hand for those who feel uncomfortable (or embarrassed) exposing their bare feet. Say, "Would you like to trade your wet boots for some warm, dry slippers?" But for a more formal event, like a dinner party, where guests are dressing up, it's most polite to let them keep on whatever footwear they want to wear.


This is basically the moderate shoes-off position- shoes off, except at parties or formal occasions. Personally, I think shoes off at a formal dinner party is fine. Millionaires and celebrities wear tuxedos and ball gowns at yacht parties and still take their shoes off.

I must also express my doubts about the wisdom of offering slippers in the UK. Most British people would just think that is too weird and would rather be in socks or bare feet.

12 comments:

Bob said...

I have to agree with you Matthew, it would be odd to offer guests slippers. It has happened to my wife on a few occasions. When she goes to those homes now she puts a pair of foldable slippers in her purse. Some of her friends will bring slippers when they visit.

Bob said...

Sandro,
From reading the previous post I got the impression that you were Armenian. My wife is half Armenian. Her aunts were great bakers but the rest of their cooking was just so so

Kelly said...

Socks and especially bare feet are a complete faux pas for any indoor occasion, especially (Heaven forbid) formal parties. Can't people have some decency?

Bob said...

Kelly, From your comments I take it that you would object to having to remove your shoes regardless of the occasion. What do you find indecent about removing your shoes at someone's home? If you knew in advance would you object to bringing either slippers or in-door shoes?

Sandro said...

No, I'm not Armenian ).

Mark said...

I suspect that Kelly is deliberately "stirring it" So it would be unwise to rise to the bait. Another UK forum debated this recently and had such a person. The debate quickly descended to farce and had to be stopped!

Matthew Celestis said...

Sandro is Georgian. I mentioned the restaurant, because they served Georgian wine.

Bob said...

Thanks for the clarification Matthew

Kelly said...

Bob - if I knew in advance I would bring slippers or indoor shoes.

Bob said...

Kelly, That is a perfectly reasonable approach. I can't imagine anyone who has a shoe free home would object. I do agree that it is better to inform first time visitors in advance rather than springing it on them when they arrive

Anonymous said...

If my shoes are wet/muddy I will take them off. If they are clean, though, I generally prefer not to. My shoes usually are clean as if they get dirty I clean them off when I get the chance.

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