How teen's parents gave her 'several hundred thousand' dollars
to spend on shoes so she could start fashion blogLuckily the site has become a huge success, with Sea of Shoes attracting 400,000 clicks a monthNow 20, Jane Aldridge is shunning college to focus on her blogging career
19:51 GMT, 6 April 2012
The blog Sea of Shoes chronicles Dallas native Jane Aldridge and her infatuation with designer shoes.
Co-managed by her divorced parents, the blog features Miss Aldridge's own styling ideas, shopping finds and vast luxury shoe collection, which has led to a devoted following of over 400,000 hits per month.
Started five years ago after her parents invested 'several hundred thousand dollars, mostly in shoes', the now 20-year-old has decided to skip college in favour of moving into her own apartment to continue the blog.
New season stilettos: The parents of 20-year-old Jane Aldridge admitted to spending $70,000 on her blog, mostly for shoes
When a reporter revealed that her parents estimate the investment in her blog 'runs several hundred thousand dollars,' neither Miss Aldridge nor her
mother Judy, denied it, admitting it was 'closer to $70,000'.
However, after online fashion sites
began to highlight the expenses incurred her
parents, Miss Aldridge hit back yesterday calling the profile 'grossly exaggerated
and highly stylized' on Twitter.
less-than-flattering profile was first published in the Texas Monthly,
where the blogger lives, and painted a picture of her daily life where
she documents her pricey designer shoe collection.
The reporter, Jason Sheeler wrote about Miss Aldridge's reservations on attending college, and her mother's disdain for her younger daughter's affinity for shopping at sales.
Both points have since garnered attention from various fashion sites.
Mr Sheeler reported in the profile: '”Why should I go to college” Jane asked me a few months ago, as
she grabbed a glass of champagne off a passing tray at a boutique party
we both attended. “I’m already doing what I want.”'
He continued: 'We pass by the discounter Nordstrom Rack (“Gross!” says Judy. “Carol made me go there one time, and I wanted to punch myself”).
Sea of Shoes: Co-managed by her divorced parents, the blog features Miss Aldridge's vast luxury shoe collection, which gets over 400,000 hits per month
He also recounted a conversation in which Jane brought up her younger sister, Carole, referring to her budget-orientated choice of clothes, which was also singled out by other news sites.
Mr Sheeler wrote: 'Jane smooths her half-tucked, sheer white blouse. I tell her I think it's a cool shirt. “Really I think it's, like, Splen-did,”
she says with a grimace, sounding out the mall brand with the horror of
someone being forced to say “ointment.”
He continued: 'She nicked the shirt from her
sister's closet; Carol, who is seventeen, is in her first year of
boarding school in Wales. “I'm getting my hair dyed in a bit and, you
know, what if it messes up my shirt”'
Mr Sheeler's profile portrays a suburban teenage girl who has an 'intimidating infatuation' with designer footwear, whose blog Sea of Shoes has been featured in Teen Vogue, caught the attention of Karl Lagerfeld, and charges up-to $20,000 for event appearances.
Mr Sheeler wrote she is now considered one of the top style bloggers in the country.
Over a series of weeks, Mr Sheeler shadowed Miss Aldridge and her mother, who takes most of the photos on Sea of
Shoes, answers her daughter's email, handles press
requests, and negotiates her fashion event appearances.
Like mother like daughter: Jane (left) and Judy (right) both run Sea of Shoes, the successful blog which documents designer shoes
He wrote a day-in-the-life-of profile, which recounts conversations as well as giving background to her now successful blog.
The story starts with Aldridge 'snapping' at Mr Sheeler to stop touching a pair of her $750 glittery Miu Miu booties. 'Hello! I'm trying to shoot those. Can you put them down' she says in a 'mean-girl tone'.
Neither Miss Aldridge nor her mother contested the article or its contents in an interview on the national television programme Daybreak regarding the profile.
However she took to her blog after NYMag.com recently published several quotes from the original text, which she called a 'snarky and out-of-context synopsis'.
Perturbed at being portrayed in a negative light, Miss Aldridge also came forward to deny several of her original quotes published in the Texas Monthly.
Specifically regarding her disinterest in college, as well as the $70,000 worth of expenses that are incurred for Sea of Shoes, Miss Aldridge wrote on her blog: 'I cannot believe the figures they threw out. Not one of them is even a little bit close to true.'
She continued: 'There is a blatantly made up quote where I dismiss the notion of college.'
Since she wrote what she called, her rebuttal, on her blog, hordes of fans have come forward on Twitter to defend her, writing 'don't listen to the haters' and 'keep your head up'.
However, the Texas Monthly, a publication with a highly regarded reputation for accuracy, stands by the story and sent NYmag.com a statement.
'Both the writer and the fact-checker contacted Jane multiple times throughout the editing process to clarify details, and Judy Aldridge, as Jane’s spokesperson, confirmed figures, quotes, and biographical details with our fact-checker through several phone calls.
'(Judy did contest the figure “several hundred thousand dollars” of investment in the blog given to the writer by Bryan Aldridge; when we could not contact him because he was out of the country, we chose to also include the number she provided, “closer to $70,000.”)
'We stand by the reporting in this story. In Jimmy Choo stiletto heels.'