How To: Tackle The Square Toe Trend

13th February 2020

TEXT BY FLORENCE TROTT | Photography by MIKKO PuttoneN

Square up to the season’s most directional shoe silhouette

It’s no secret that square toe shoes are having a ‘moment’. Many are calling the straight-edged shoe silhouette’s renaissance the ‘Bottega Effect’. It’s been in motion for a couple of seasons now, ever since the label’s Creative Director Daniel Lee debuted his AW19 collection featuring square-toe sandals, quilted pumps and moto boots, dubbed ‘The New Bottega’. Cue: fashion circuit melt-down. But how to wear them?

Get to know the season’s most-wanted styles with our guide to the best. We’re hankering after Balenciaga’s glossy mock-croc loafers and square-toe mules, and are planning a summer spent in BY FAR’s square-toe mid-heels and Jacquemus’ whimsical barely-there sandals. Meanwhile, Bottega’s cutaway intrecciato mules are selling out faster than you can say ‘fair and square’. Shape up your wardrobe with our guide to wearing the square toe trend. 


Throwback to ‘90s minimalism with square toe mules that Mossy herself would be proud to wear. Back then (as now), Prada was the blunt-edged shoe’s biggest champion with a landmark SS ’96 collection that showcased the power of a square-toe shoe. Today, look to the aforementioned Bottega Veneta, Dutch label Wandler, and London-based designer Rejina Pyo for a modern take on the minimal style. Wear with slip dresses, pelmet skirts and light-wash jeans.



The square root of cool, barely-there sandals are the easiest way to tap into the square-toe trend this summer. More understated than their closed-toe alternatives, look to Proenza Schouler for strappy sandals in a range of colours. When the occasion calls for a little glamour, dress up in Amina Muaddi’s crystal-encrusted heels, or try cult Milanese label The Attico’s high-octane satin sandals in playful jewel tones.  



We’re not talking ‘square’ in the sense of a suburban professional whose favourite topics of conversation are pensions and their weekly Waitrose delivery. These are squarely ‘fashion’ – think insider’s favourite Martine Rose python loafers, or Gucci’s two-tone vintage-inspired block heels. Wear with distressed denim, palazzo pants and minis to strike a balance between preppy and effortless cool. 



Ruler-edged closed-toe pumps and boots come in a range of colours and finishes for spring. If you’ve been anywhere near our Instagram, you’ll already know we’re obsessed with Manu Atelier’s square-toe duck boots. The soft, cream-coloured leather is perfect for the transitional season. If it’s a pump you’re after, look no further than Bottega Veneta’s in-demand intrecciato style. If you can get your feet in them before they sell out, that is. 



For work, channel a grown-up ‘90s aesthetic and team square-toed sandals with slouchy suiting and power shoulders. For high days and holidays, put your best foot forward this summer with A.W.A.K.E Mode’s wrap-around square-toe sandals in white leather, a delicate take on the trend. Alternatively, prepare for market mooches and beach-side strolls with The Row’s chunky leather Ginza flip flops



Amp up the volume after-dark in square-toe shoes with added attitude. Porte and Paire’s chain detail sandals combine two trends in one, whilst Magda Butrym’s PVC and mirrored leather heels are the perfect dance floor partners.


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