Five styles that'll complete your wardrobe this season
Words: Jabulile Dlamini-Qwesha| Photography: Duane Howard | Styling: Mandy Nash
Losing direction and mindlessly buying every well-priced dress or jumpsuit you come across is a real danger of summer shopping. The reasonable price points make slipping into a shop-as-you-wear pattern seem convenient, but the truth is that it’s an embodiment of “failing to plan and planning to fail”. A quick fix to the serious and recurring question of “what am I going to wear?” is never the best solution – it’s better to be equipped enough to never need to ask.
How you manage that is by anchoring your summer wardrobe with solid shoe choices. While footwear may be the trickiest of purchases, it is the most crucial; that is how you set the tone for your style, season after season. And because you’re wearing fewer layers in the heat, they’re a succinct way to communicate your sartorial vision for each situation that you might need to show up to.
Cue the luxury cruising, holidaying in the Hamptons babes with generational wealth look. Strangely dubbed the “French girl favourite”, espadrilles have been the quintessential daytime summer staple since, since... and for that, we can thank the Spanish. Adding a casual air of preppiness, you’d do best to pair them with a pastel-hued babydoll or maxi dress the next time you’re sipping bubbles on a yacht or cocktails at the beachfront. You could even do them with cut-off denim shorts and a relaxed-fit cotton shirt or culotte jumpsuit for perfect picnic style.
Light as air and comfortable as ever, flatforms give flats a run for their money as the go-to shoes for the season. Making their reappearance with Louis Vuitton, Erdem, Chanel and Burberry’s SS17 collections, they have since trickled down to every shoe rack worth noting. Anything but polished, in most iterations, flatforms have an edgy feel borrowed from the punk era. Quite literally a cross between flat shoes and platforms, they're ready for you to pick up whenever you want to be low key, but need dramatic elevation.
Strappy heels are basically synonymous with summer: they have been for decades, and will be for more to come. The only difference each year is the height of the heel and shape of the style that’s in vogue. And no matter which you catch, you can be sure that they’ll make the trend rounds again after a few years or so. Opt for the timeless must-have with a low block heel and square toe, this season; the style of the moment is a throwback to the late 90s and 2000s. You can pretty much wear these with anything, from two-piece suits, jeans and a blouse or a slip dress.
Lace Up Heels
One of summer’s hottest shoe trends for over four seasons straight, whether on the runway or dominating the celeb style scene, the impact of lace-up heel may be unparalleled. The style may require a few more minutes of your morning routine to physically lace up, figuring out what to pair it with might also take a few moments of consideration as well. Just keep in mind that you’ll never go wrong with a baby doll dress, anything with a high slit and how cute the lace-up effect looks with midi crop cuts, and flourish.
Slides in every form have been having a massive moment since FENTY did the things with PUMA, we’re zoning in on the iconic German brand Birkenstock’s Eva silhouette. Striking two birds with one stone, this style also taps into the ugly shoe trend that’s making all of the rounds lately – except it’s not actually ugly, it’s just not an easy shape to get used to. Fans of the brand swear by it, and with good reason; with the new material and colour upgrades they’re the perfect intersection of style and comfort. The casual slip-on you might end up wearing everywhere (all summer), Birkenstocks look as great with swimwear on the beach as they would with jeans. And you know, the silver variation wouldn’t look out of place with grey trousers on a laidback day at the office.