WORDS BY FLORENCE TROTT | PHOTOGRAPHY BY MOEEZ ALI
Style hacks to make your favourite seasonal shoes work all year-round.
Is there anything more forlorn than your favourite boots languishing in the back of the wardrobe over summer? Or those heeled sandals, the perfect height for dancing, having to sit out every winter party? If you think sandals are inappropriate for February, and boots should be reserved for winter, think again. We’re here to argue the case otherwise. Being a fair-weather (or wet-weather) friend to your favourite shoes is a wasted opportunity. With the right styling, your shoes can prove their perennial worth whatever the weather. Unleash their potential with a few simple styling hacks – a resourceful and cost-effective way of indulging in a whole new footwear look, without caving to the here-today, gone-tomorrow trends of the season. Here’s how we wear some of our favourite seasonal shoes all year-round.
Often open-toe and strappy, logic tells us that platform sandals are summer shoes. We beg to differ. Wear black silk Roger Vivier’s or snakeskin Prada platforms with black opaque tights in winter, or bare legs and high-waisted skirts in summer. Saint Laurent’s classic Bianca sandals can be teamed with sheer tights or socks and palazzo pants in winter, and bare-to-the-thigh legs come spring. It’s all about balance (on a 6 inch heel, anyway.)
Not for the faint of heart, ‘wandals’, AKA winter sandals, involve re-purposing your favourite summer shoes for the cold winter months. No longer a fashion faux pas, take your cues from Instagram’s most stylish insiders, like Pernille Teisbeck, and rock flatform sandals with chunky socks. It works with sliders, too. Wear with pared-back neutrals and casual pieces like jeans and wide-leg trousers.
Reap the benefits of your best pair of strappy heels or favourite BV pumps all year-round by teaming with tights and gossamer-thin socks. We’ve discussed in-depth our love of styling sandals with hosiery previously here. Black fishnets and logo lace tights (like these by Gucci) will make your favourite black sandals work regardless of temperature or simply a pair of 100 deniers for a chilly (typical day) in London. For parties, wear with a thigh-skimming LBD or a pastel organza midi-dress, by day, layers upon layers of cashmere and a long-line overcoat.
We’re not suggesting you try and rock a pair of knee-highs on the hottest day of the year (cue: sweaty shins). But they do lend themselves surprisingly well to spring, and the unpredictable British summer. Team a pair of slouchy Gianvito Rossi Lauras or black leather lace-ups with billowy prairie-inspired dresses and maxis, or indulge in some Western style with Isabel Marant’s knee-high suede cowboy boots and a mini skirt. Colour and material are by the by here – the trick is to create a cohesive contrast between the heavy boot and a light, spring-appropriate skirt or dress.
From lace-up combats to minimal riding boots, black boots are incredibly versatile, but their colour means they lose their appeal when the mercury starts to rise. We’re here to fight their corner and give them a moment in the sun by styling with the appropriate pieces. Black Western-inspired boots, like this iconic pair by Chloé, look great with billowing, bohemian dresses. For summer in the city, wear your favourite black leather ankle boots with printed maxis and slip dresses, or team these utilitarian Balenciagas with a white broderie anglaise dress for a satisfyingly contrasting look. We are not entirely opposed the idea of platforms Doc Martens with floral dressed, either.
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