Sandals for all occasions

Anna Chandler

Summer means shorter dresses, natural hair and tossing on sandals every day for three months, right? Well, yes it does. But sliding into those muddy Birkenstocks for a fancy wedding may end up with one receiving sneers and glares from bystanders. As the warmer months roll around and trends change, learn just what shoes to invest in for different occasions this summer.

The gladiator sandal craze began in 2008 when embellished, strappy sandals became a “must-have” to make a bold summer statement. Color trends varied from blacks to browns and different use of materials such as leather and plastic. Heights of straps and heels have even differed during the past seasons, but the gladiator shoe trend has yet to fade. The shoes match perfectly with a bohemian fashion but are also great to pull off feminine looks by pairing them with dresses. Invest in a pair or two this summer to maximize your chic casual closet.

Slip-on and Mule sandals have also made a bold statement for spring/summer 2015. These shoes are simple yet classy and easy to slide on for a busy day. While the trend may not work for everyone because of the lack of comfort and support in the shoe, they are easy to dress up or down.

Wedge sandals with a thicker sole are an excellent choice for women who want height without aching feet or the struggle of keeping one’s balance. There are thousands of variations of sizes and design features associated with wedged sandals. Whether one’s attending a beach wedding and opt for a cork heel or go grungy-chic with a leather fabric, the opportunities are endless.

Lastly, for those of us who insist on comfort rather than style there are a few tips to get by. Find a shoe with a back strap to lessen the pressure on the toes that creates friction and pain when walking. If possible, always invest in a sandal that has some arch support. This support can take away the main aches and pains that some beautiful shoes cause. The brand Birksenstocks are well known for their incredible arch support as the footbed molds to one’s foot shape over time. Lastly, think about the day you have ahead and buy a pair of shoes that fits your feet. If you know you’ll be doing a lot of walking, plan to leave the heels at home.

Trends change constantly and it’s inevitable that fashion gurus want to keep up. So invest in a statement gladiator shoe or wedged sandal for parties and weddings and always have a pair of comfortable, supportive shoes in the back of the closet.