I finally ended my internal argument of are they or aren't they ugly and bought some Danskos after school today.
These are my first pair and they appear to be comfortable. Definitely an expensive shoe purchase for me, but one I am hoping will pay off. Everyone always talks about how fab they are and it's no wonder why! Below is the color I snagged from Wanda at Because Girls Will Be Girls in Salem (figured she deserves a small business shout out... and if you're a teacher, you get 10% off)
I thought at least these reflect my style in the upper material. They are a nice shiny patent leather, so they're easy to clean and pretty versatile with any color. At first glance, I wasn't wild about thinking of wearing them with brown, but in person they kind of pick up the color they are beside more than you might think.
Reviews of the comfort factor to come.