We are excited to be one of just a few boutiques carrying Livie & Luca's new limited edition Ruches! This is Livie's twice-annual release to celebrate the change in season. Shoes are produced in small quantities and offered exclusively at hand-picked stores. Ruches are here and ready to ship at Smockingbird!
People have been asking about colors, sizes, fit. So here's Smockingbird's review of the new Ruches and a comparison with Livie's famous Petals.
The pro tempore Ruches are available in Cornflower Shimmer and Rose Shimmer. I'm not a big fan of pastels, and in all candor, names like Rose and Cornflower had me concerned the colors would be frumpy. More grandma-ish than little girl. The stock photo with the basket didn't help.
The colors are actually beautiful in real life! The blue is softer, less minty, and more versatile. The pink is a lot more pink than I expected from a name like rose. All good surprises! They match tons in our closet and will be great to contrast with the summer reds and navys and carry us through to next spring's florals.
As usual, Livie doesn't disappoint in its details. The scalloped straps and toe are so pretty! It's hard to capture in a photo, but the leather is shimmery and captures light beautifully. And my favorite detail is the tonal stitching at the front of the toe. Adorable!
Petals are the gold standard in the Livie world - and in the boutique shoe world in general. So we put the Ruches and Petals toe to toe (so to speak) to show you how they compare!
Fit: Both true to size. Identical length. Ruches are slightly wider in the toe bed. We wear the same size in both styles.
Fabric: Petals are made from a shiny patent leather. The patent sometimes gets scuffed with intense play, and although made from a high quality leather they can be a wee bit stiff until broken in. The limited edition Ruches are made from a matte but shimmery leather. They actually sparkle in the light. They wear pretty well and are made from a very soft leather that is immediately comfortable. We have had an occasional blister from Petals but never from Ruches.
Strap: This is the "how hard is it for a child to put it on herself" factor. Petals have Velcro straps that double back at a d-ring on the side of the shoe. In theory it should be easy to put your foot in and Velcro tight. For whatever reason our strap often comes out of the d-ring, so that means re-threading it. This isn't always easy or fast (for me) and can be difficult for a child. The petal strap also is long and narrow so you have to line it up carefully when doubling back. Ruches have one strap that goes over the top and Velcros on the outer side of the shoe. Easy peasy. Any child can put them on or take them off in seconds. Of course, that can be a drawback at times.
Look: Petals are a touch more fancy because of the patent leather. They come in so many gorgeous colors and are the perfect match for girly dresses. They also definitely work for nicer occasions. Ruches have a more casual look better suited for everyday wear and are a cute match for anything with leggings.
Functionality: They both are great designs. Because of the closed toe, Ruches seem more practical for school, playgrounds, trips to the zoo, and any running around. Petals work better for dressing to impress, going to dinner, playdates, and everything in between. We've taken them to the playground but they tend to capture dirt/mulch in the cutouts at the toe. That said, one Smockingbirdy prefers Ruches hands down, and the other prefers Petals. Go figure.
Color: We lined up the sky blue petals, pink petals, cornflower ruches, and rose ruches. The pinks in the petals and ruches are nearly identical. The blue ruches are softer and less turquoise than the blue petals. All are great colors and are going to work with tons of outfits.
Price: Petals range from $56-58. Ruches range from $54-56. These limited edition Ruches are $60. All have excellent resale value when you're ready to size up.
Don't mind the size difference in the lineup. We are low on Petals right now as they are on sale and going fast! Anyhow, we're so glad we ordered the special Ruches and are definitely adding them to the girls' closet.