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Do You Ask Your Guests To Remove Their Shoes - Page 2

post #21 of 87
IS it all of Nova Scotia I wonder? A friend of mine lives in Halifax and says it is the norm there as well.

Another thing I don't get is how asking someone to take off their shoes will embarrass someone or make them uncomfortable any more than asking them to take off their coat or have a seat.
post #22 of 87
I don't have any problem asking people to take their shoes off. We typically have a few pairs of shoes sitting by the entry door anyway, so that is my guest's first clue. On occassion people haven't taken them off, say my dh's elderly grandparents and I haven't freaked about it. I just tell them about a baby/toddler putting everything in their mouths. Everyone has been understanding and I haven't had anyone seem upset or that I had been rude. Just my 2c.
post #23 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post

Another thing I don't get is how asking someone to take off their shoes will embarrass someone or make them uncomfortable any more than asking them to take off their coat or have a seat.
First of all, you don't DIRECT someone to take off their coat or have a seat. You INVITE them to do so, for their comfort.

Secondly, (like I said in my earlier post) if you're unaccustomed to it, you could find it embarrassing for a variety of reasons: socks with holes in the toes, foot-odor, hairy toes with grown-out polish and crusty cuticles and in-growns :Puke... who knows. But, like I said, these are things you probably prepare for when you expect to be taking your shoes off. People in my area don't expect to take their shoes off, so they might be taken off guard and possibly embarrassed. If a guest sees me take off my shoes and my children's, and the guest doesn't follow suit, I figure s/he isn't comfortable doing so and I leave it alone.
post #24 of 87
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommyErin View Post
That's kinda funny that you put it that way. Where I come from, it's very rude to ask people to take off their shoes. You can set the example, if that's what you want to encourage guest to do, but having been raised to be a "Southern Lady", one would never ask a guest to take off their shoes simply to keep one's house cleaner.

On the other hand, where I come from, no lady or gentleman would ever light up a cigarette in someone else's house without being invited to light up. If you aren't invited to, you step outside. I was raised in KY, south but not the deep south, so I never really thought of these being strictly southern mores. This is particularly funny as KY is still a completely smoking state -- you can still smoke in restaurants even!

*I* get particularly incensed when someone asks me to take off my shoes in their house and their floors are so dirty that my socks get so dirty and crusty that I don't want to put my shoes back on. Now *that's* rude! And it's happened to me more than once!
__________________________

I was raised to be a "lady" too !! and its not very "Lady Like" to walk into someones home and all over their floors and carpets with your outdoor shoes. Particularly if you know they have small children crawling around on the floor. ... then again a true "Lady" would know that!
post #25 of 87
It's a cultural norm here to remove your outside shoes when entering someone's home. But even in the States, we had a little shoe rack by the door. Most people removed their shoes and some refused.
post #26 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post

Another thing I don't get is how asking someone to take off their shoes will embarrass someone or make them uncomfortable any more than asking them to take off their coat or have a seat.
Taking off your shoes is *very* different than taking off your coat. People can be really funny about feet. Feet are personal. To ask a guest to do something that has the potential of making them feel uncomforable is inhospitable, IMO.

Taking off your shoes is also a sign of extreme relaxation and comfort level. I don't want to take off my shoes and be exposed in someone's house unless it's someone I'm really close to.

Also, I'm a very cold person. I'm cold all the time, even in the summer. Exposing my feet, even in socks, makes this much worse.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Decluttering Nut View Post
I was raised to be a "lady" too !! and its not very "Lady Like" to walk into someones home and all over their floors and carpets with your outdoor shoes. Particularly if you know they have small children crawling around on the floor. ... then again a true "Lady" would know that!
Hmmm, never heard that. Where I come from, a lady would never remove her shoes in public unless there is a need for having one's feet exposed eg a pedicure.

I understand there are parts of the world that it's the norm. If I were in Japan, I would take of my shoes. In the USA, in every part I've ever been in, it's NOT the norm, not even in parts of the country with snow and slush. You have a door mat outside and perhaps even a rug inside the door and people wipe their feet.

It is kind of funny, though, the passion this topic arouses.
post #27 of 87
I've never actually had to ask someone to take off their shoes when they've come over. If someone didn't take off their shoes, I don't know if I would or not.

It isn't just Japan. It is the cultural norm in most of the world.
post #28 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post

It is the cultural norm in most of the world.
Are you sure? In England and Ireland it isn't. In Australia, it isn't. In the parts of Canada I've visited, it isn't. Where I've been in Mexico, it isn't. It was in Hawaii but that made sense in that everyone was trying to keep the sand out of the house. We were all in flip-flops anyway.

I'm by no means a world traveler but I would think if it's the norm in "most" of the world, I would have encountered it more than the handful of times I have been asked to remove my shoes.

I guess it's just one of those things. I can't explain why I hate it any more than you can explain to me in a way I can understand why it is important to you.
post #29 of 87
I've only heard of one Canadian who said it wasn't the norm where they live and that was just yesterday.

In fact, that is one of the things they advise American ex pats in the ex pats groups that meet here.

That's neither here nor there. I don't care what people do or don't do. I care that people, where it is the cultural norm to remove shoes, are being called rude.

I am also blown away that people wear shoes in their own house.

In fact, one reason why it bothers me is something others probably find rude- everyone I know when visiting curls up on the couch or otherwise puts feet on the ottoman or other furniture. I'm sure a lot of people find it rude to put your feet up in other people's houses.
post #30 of 87
I'm not 100% sure, but it has been that way everywhere I've been and a quick google search shows most of Asia and most of Europe does it. That is all the information I can find however.
post #31 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by organic-momma View Post
It's pretty much just the norm in Canada that nobody wears shoes in the house (we'd be tracking in lots of slush & snow if we did), so it's just never a question, people walk in and take of their shoes. I find it really gross when people wear shoes indoors personally.
Yes, that. The common etiquette as a guest is to take your shoes off when you walk into a house. The only time this seems to differ is in the summer, when we're all in sandals. I usually take a queue from the person I'm visiting. For example, sometimes I'll step to the side to take my shoes off, and they'll tell me not to bother. No big deal.

I've never had anybody walk into my house and NOT take their shoes off. I'd be pretty annoyed if they tromped onto the carpeted floors with snowy or muddy boots. Not to mention the chemicals they'd be tracking in onto the floors that my young children still crawl and roll around on. Pesticides from lawns, for one. Oil and residue from walking on the roads. Cigarette butts. Etc. Gross.
post #32 of 87
So seriously - I have neutral colored carpet that doesn't show a lot of dirt, but do you honestly shampoo the mud and salt out of your carpet every time you have guests? I have people in my home 4-5 times per week and I'm not so picky that I'd clean every single time, but I'd want to get the gross out of the carpets at least once a week if people were walking around in shoes! So from a purely practical perspective, how often do you shampoo carpets?

I'm not really interested in hearing from people who have hardwood or gross carpets that they don't care about keeping clean, or people who don't ever have guests. People like me, who have guests at least once a week, and carpets that they would want to keep clean, mostly.

FWIW, I've never had to ask people to remove their shoes (they just all do automatically), and I live in Ohio. The only time it was an issue was at my wedding, where we informed people ahead of time that they would not be allowed to wear shoes during the ceremony (temple rules).
post #33 of 87
YES - we do.

We have a sign at the door that says "please leave your shoes at the door"

It's kind of funny, people who either don't see the sign or think maybe we aren't serious....they have a hard time leaving the tile entry with their shoes on after they see all our shoes lined up by the door.

My husband is Vietnamese, therefore it is easy to fall back on the practice as being cultural...however I think we'd be doing it even if he wasnt VN.

Most people don't mind...the ones who do are usually older and more uptight.
post #34 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommyErin View Post
Are you sure? In England and Ireland it isn't. In Australia, it isn't. In the parts of Canada I've visited, it isn't. Where I've been in Mexico, it isn't. It was in Hawaii but that made sense in that everyone was trying to keep the sand out of the house. We were all in flip-flops anyway.

I'm by no means a world traveler but I would think if it's the norm in "most" of the world, I would have encountered it more than the handful of times I have been asked to remove my shoes.

I guess it's just one of those things. I can't explain why I hate it any more than you can explain to me in a way I can understand why it is important to you.
This sounds like a case of "Wherever you go, there you are." Chances are that it IS the norm in the places you mentioned, but nobody wanted to offend you by asking you to remove your shoes.
post #35 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Erin+babyAndrew View Post
This sounds like a case of "Wherever you go, there you are." Chances are that it IS the norm in the places you mentioned, but nobody wanted to offend you by asking you to remove your shoes.
But if it were the norm, wouldn't there have been shoes by the door? And wouldn't my hosts have been in bare feet or house shoes?

I think it's so bizzare that people are trying to make me out like a freak because I wear my shoes in the house. In fact, I have them on right now and have had them on since I got dressed.

Chacq'un a son gout. It's what makes the world go 'round, right?
post #36 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommyErin View Post
But if it were the norm, wouldn't there have been shoes by the door? And wouldn't my hosts have been in bare feet or house shoes?

I think it's so bizzare that people are trying to make me out like a freak because I wear my shoes in the house. In fact, I have them on right now and have had them on since I got dressed.

Chacq'un a son gout. It's what makes the world go 'round, right?
not trying to make you sound like a freak at all, we all have our own interpretation of what is the norm. I just curious, do you have special shoes that are for indoors only? or do you wear the same shoes out in parking lots, playgrounds, hospitals, shopping downtown as you wear in your house?

we have hardwood floors and tiles and still remove our shoes because if there is any grit on those outdoor shoes, it gets ground into hard floors and scuffs the finish. we take our shoes off and put them on a shoe rack on the landing so there is room for our guests shoes and boots by the back door.
post #37 of 87
If my shoes were wet and muddy I would never go tromping around on my host's carpet. I'd spend a lot of time wiping them off on the door mat. I'd ask for a rag to wipe them off if it needed it. If I really couldn't get them sufficiently clean I'd take them off and leave them at the door, but I'd really appreciate it if there was a chair near by.

In the mean time, I wouldn't ask someone to take their shoes off in my house any more than I'd ask them to take their pants off. For me, wearing shoes is being dressed. I wouldn't go bare footed at someone else's house unless I was swimming or playing outside, or if I was spending the night and wasn't fully dressed yet.

Realistically, floors need to be really REALLY clean to keep feet and socks from not getting dirty. Like someone else said, I don't clean my floors daily. I might sweep daily but that doesn't get everything up. I'm not going to count on someone else's floor being that clean to keep my feet and socks clean. I'd really resent stepping with my bare feet in the dog's drool or this morning's crumbs around the toddler's chair.

As well, I have flat feet and my feet hurt a lot of the time. I have prescription arch supports that work best in lace-up sneakers. It is a pain and a half to sit down and take my shoes off, and then have to put them back on and lace them up, each and every time. And it's especially annoying when I'm simply going into someone's house for just a minute, like to pick my kid up from a play date. I'd spend more time taking the shoes off and putting them back on than walking 20 feet into the house in shoes that are reasonably clean. I hope my leaving my shoes on wouldn't make someone angry with me.

When I get busy doing chores around the house I put my shoes on. Fly Lady (who I don't follow) even recommends 'getting dressed down to your shoes' every morning to encourage you to stay up with your house work. She suggests you keep one pair of sneakers for just around the house, that therefore stays clean. I think that's a really good solution.

I have plenty of guests, including older folks who aren't accustomed to taking their shoes off when they visit someone else's home. I'm not going to ask my aunt to take her nice sling backs that match her dress off when she enters my house, nor her husband who's wearing wing tips to match his dress pants. And neither should a person's age or personality should not be disregarded simply to make my housecleaning easier.

That said, most of my children's friends take their shoes off automatically when they come over. No problem. They're more likely to have grubby, dirty shoes than the adults are, anyway.

Regarding the rug rats, what happened to the idea that a little dirt doesn't hurt? I don't object to my kids getting a little dirty at the park. The house is certainly not that dirty.

I guess I'll just say that if anyone here ever visits my house you are free to leave your shoes on or take them off. I hope if I visited you you'd let me leave my shoes on if I was having a bad feet day and was wearing my sneakers. I promise I won't track dirt all over your house.
post #38 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
That's neither here nor there. I don't care what people do or don't do. I care that people, where it is the cultural norm to remove shoes, are being called rude.

Who called you rude? It would be considered rude where I live, but the opposite is true where you live, it seems. There's no judgement in that.

The only place I have visited where taking off shoes was the norm was Puerto Rico, on the beach. Inland, people leave their shoes on. It's about the sand and nothing else.

Quote:
Originally Posted by songbird45
I have people in my home 4-5 times per week and I'm not so picky that I'd clean every single time, but I'd want to get the gross out of the carpets at least once a week if people were walking around in shoes! So from a purely practical perspective, how often do you shampoo carpets?
For starters, I don't have NEARLY as many guests as you do. 4-5 times a week? Wow.
We probably have guests once or twice a week, but the kids are terrible about taking their shoes off when they walk in the door, so maybe it evens out. I shampoo the carpet once a month or so. I have NEVER shampooed the carpet in the downstairs apartment that I share with my girls (upstairs is the comon living area). It's berber and I feel that running the vac keeps it clean enough, and frankly I don't care if my kids rut around on a less than pristine surface. They're children, Not hermetically sealed medical instruments. The dirt that comes off shoes is the same dirt they play in, outdoors. I belong to the school of 'germ exposure=immune health.'

I would feel differently if I had a wee crawler, though- then I'm sure I would shampoo downstairs as often as I do upstairs, and be more strict with the kids about taking their shoes off immediately upon entering.


Now, here's a question in return:

Don't any of you have DOGS???
post #39 of 87
ps~

If we're going to be all fussy, can't we all agree that even a relatively clean carpet is a petri dish for mold and germs? If I had my way, the entire house would be hardwood or bamboo. Ah, well.
post #40 of 87
Yep I hate carpet. We have hardwood.

Well there is carpet in the bedrooms. I would rp it up if I owned this house.

It may have been the other thread where people said asking a guest to take off their shoes is rude.

No dogs here.
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