Well, the great British summer seems to be here and gives me an excuse to put my best foot forward! At this time of year, I always seem to develop a summer footwear obsession, a desire – nay, need! – to expose my feet to the fresh air after months of being enclosed in cashmere socks and winter boots.
First things first, though, I treat my feet to a luxurious pedicure – that winter skin has to be sloughed off and toenails painted in either a nude go-with-anything shade or a dazzling pink or red polish for maximum glamour.
Then I can turn my thoughts to summer shoes – yes shoes, plural. One pair of summer shoes simply won’t cut it, in my opinion – style needs to be matched to occasion (well, that’s my excuse anyway!). Depending on the temperature outside and what I’m wearing, I know I’m going to need a selection of different styles and weights to match everything from formal outfits to gossamer light-as-air resort wear (including my trusty Rosie On Fire kimonos, of course!).
First, a pair of trusty open-toed sandals to match with shorts and a T-shirt – think Birkenstocks, sleek Gucci sliders (yes, please!) or a more trendy fashion version (Zara and Topshop have some great designs this season), the closest you can get to going barefoot while actually wearing shoes.
Next, for slightly cooler days, a pair of lightweight suede ankle boots such as desert boots (they were made to be worn in the desert, after all!) for a smart-casual option to team with dark denim or chambray.
No summer would be complete without a pair of trainers such as Vans or Converse, preferably in a breathable fabric such as mesh or cotton. Classic white is always a good go-to (though beware of grass stains!) but I often like to switch it up to an on-trend seasonal colour – this year I’ll be looking for a cool yellow pair to match with everything from shorts and jeans to summer dresses. Or, for a more preppy look, a good boat shoe – great for days down by the sea and for those days pootling on a boat deck, where a non-slip sole is essential.
In summer, I always turn to a great wedge or flatform to add a little height to my look. This season, I’m lusting after Michael Kors flatforms or a canvas espadrille pair of wedges, either with or without ankle ties.
For the office, where I need to keep toes covered but, I’ll be looking for a pair of mid-level slingbacks – the open back will help keep my feet cool but the closed toe will still keep me looking professional. M&S have a great square toe block-heeled option in some beautiful pastel colours this season, a steal at only £25.
And finally, a strappy pair of dressy heels, ideal for pool parties or for pairing with a floaty dress or Rosie On Fire kimono for more dressed-up events. I look for mid-heel styles that I can wear to all-day weddings – Prada always come up trumps here, though if I’m minding the pennies I always check out Topshop for more affordable styles.
Right, I’m off … shoe shopping beckons!