To Shoe or Not To Shoe

So Neal and I are advisors for a group of young college students at the nearby state university, and occasionally invite them up to visit us en masse. And, sweet things that they are, they all cheerfully take their shoes off and leave them in a giant sloppy pile at the door rather than track dirt or slush or pollen (depending on the season) through my house.

I’ve never asked them to do this, and I tend myself to walk around full-shod, but I’m thinking about it now as I strive to keep the house tidier all the time. What do you think about shoes in the house? Do you wear them? Do you take ’em off? Do you find it makes a difference in dust and mess on your floors?

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5 thoughts on “To Shoe or Not To Shoe

  1. I never used to think about this. My parents have all tile and hardwood, along with some area rugs, so when the area rugs got gross we just got new ones or washed them (depending on the state). Sure, if it was snowing, or they somehow got covered in mud, I had to take them off before I got to the wood, but otherwise it was no big deal. In the dorms I didn’t bother either. I never had a habit to until I moved to a carpeted apartment. The first several years, I figured the carpet was already dirty by the door and in the living room, and I had my old dorm area rug in my room, so meh? Again, I only ditched them under extreme snow or mud consitions. Two years into living there though, I took out the area rug and pitched it. Sure enough, my room was an entirely different color than the living room (they were the same upon move-in). Ever since, especially since I’ve moved twice into beige carpeted one bedroom apartments, I take my shoes off immediately when I walk in. I want my deposit back! At my parents I still don’t always take them off right away (old habits), but I know that pretty much from here on out I will definitely be doing so at my own place. I have seen the difference it can make.

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  2. No shoes! We are constantly getting muddy, salty, or wet shoes, so we leave them on a rug by the front door. I can tell it really helps because the front rug gets crazy dirty a lot faster than the rest of our house. We have laminate floors so it is easy to tell when our main floor is dirty.

    As a side note, we tend to step on our cats’ paws & tails more with shoes on because we can’t feel them in the way, so we go without… they’re always trying to follow us around by walking under foot literally *sigh*.

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  3. Well, here in the wet PNW, it’s considered necessary by most to remove shoes before walking on carpet. Some of my neighbors don’t even take their shoes into the house at all, but have little shoe racks on the porch or in the garage by the door for shoes.
    Also, my daughter’s toys are all over the floor a lot and we sit/lie on the floor quite a bit, so it’s preferable to not have dirt/yuck tracked in from shoes to sit/lie in. 😛 And I second Kat B’s comment about stepping on the tails and paws of furry creatures… harder to do when I can feel them with my feet.

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  4. Growing up, my family was a shoe family. However, any time I went to friends’ houses, I took mine off, whether they shod or not. Now, since I own a house and we have light-colored carpet (and my wife insists), I do not shoe.

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