As a journalist I travel the world in search of stories and one of the embarrassments of visiting in some parts is their need for you to take off your shoes before entering a family home. Tights with holes or unscrubbed feet are two of the pitfalls I’m always dodging, as are the homely but unbecoming slippers I’m sometimes offered at the door. The answer, obviously, is to take your own indoor shoes and slip them on unasked. Indeed, the question of what constitutes a decent pair for the job of padding around the home is just as valid here as abroad: shoes shaped like a gentleman’s slippers are actually fashionable right now but schlepping around with a pair for these moments is impractical.
The answer, I’ve discovered, is Butterfly Twists – fold-away ballet pumps which combine all the portability and sleek elegance that impresses my international hostesses. As everyday outdoor shoes for women in the perpetual search for flat and flattering shoes as a stand-in for the highest heels, they’re a dream. Light and colourful, they’re also the thing to whip out on a plane in lieu of the throwaway ones offered by airlines. I have become addicted and their relative cheapness means I’m fast building an impressive collection. Whether you’re visiting a home or a hotel, these are a must-pack in my book.