Your 2020 Shoe Review

Shoe Shine…

The right shoe can change your life. Ask Cinderella or Dorothy all about that. Putting together an exciting ensemble is a head-to-toe process. With a new year just a breath away, it’s time to put some thought into upping our shoe game, so we can kick the year off in style. Follow along and let us help you curate a 2020 shoe collection that would make Imelda Marcos nod her head in approval.

The Slouched Boot  

Characterized by its simultaneous elegance and functionality, the knee-high slouched boot has the cool factor down pat. It’s one of those style elements that has stood the test of time. Looking at a photo of the look gracing the runway, it may be hard to tell if it’s a hold-over from the ‘70s or something born of 2019. But that alone is indicative of the style’s classic, enduring nature. 

Pair them with your favorite long-sleeved knee length dress as a hip nod to the revived popularity of the ‘70s style. Pull them over your favorite skinny jeans and leggings for a casual look with mile-high style.  If you are looking for something to invest in – something that will carry you through many a fall and winter – consider a pair in leather. 

If the knee-high length gives you pause, consider a shorter-heeled boot with the same slouch.

The Platform

Flower children of the world, unite! The platform is back. Their best feature is the way they gift us with incredible height with virtually none of the strain. There has never been a better time to rock those four inches.   

While the style with the built-in height is showing up in a myriad of shoe types, our favorite might just be the t-strap with the peep toes. They look amazing with opaque tights underneath, particularly when paired with a floral dress and trench coat. If you are feeling particularly runway-ready, don them with sweet, folded socks with a lace trim.  

If the mega-height of a platform feels daunting, fear not. 

Any platform, no matter how short, is on the list of this season’s hottest shoes.

The Sneaker

Sure, they’ll say that the popularity of the sneaker is starting to wane, but with kicks this fly – and comfortable, to boot – we beg to differ. Among our favorites are trainers and those that pay homage to the hip-hop culture of the late ‘70s and ‘80s. Bold or neutral, these are shoes to live in. 

Pair them with your favorite athletic wear, but recognize their ability to work with dresses and denim just the same. The trick is to enjoy the effortless nature of the sneakers by pairing them with a look that doesn’t feel compelled to try too hard. Jeans, a t-shirt with a half-tuck in the front and a cropped moto is the perfect uniform for a day in the city with the family or meeting your girlfriends for lunch and a latte.  

Don’t create an unnecessary distraction by pairing these babies with cotton tube socks – they’ll work best with a no-show pair. Those sneakers are more than worthy of center stage.

The Mule

This season, a backless shoe makes its return to the hearts and closets of shoe connoisseurs everywhere. Whether they’re built with a stacked heel or no heel at all, closed toe or open, the mule has an endearing way of upping your cool game.  

Pair your favorite distressed denim with a button front shirt with mules in any height for a chic style that can carry you just about anywhere. If you are wearing a dress of any kind, a heeled version is likely to carry off the look best.  

If the pointed versions feel a bit much for your ensemble, consider a pair with a loafer-like concept with a rounded front. They will create a more relaxed look but won’t cut corners on style.

The Chunked Heel

We can’t imagine a time when a classic stiletto won’t have its place on the fashion A-list, but we can say that the chunked heel is vying for Number One in 2020.  This bold, yet timeless look adds sturdiness and edge to your ensemble by way of boots, pumps or mules.  

Rock a boot with a chunked heel and a pronounced tread along with your military style jacket. Consider a sleeker version – perhaps one in a Mary Jane or t-strap style – for pairing with your favorite dress.  

You don’t have to wear this style in a four-inch height. Opt for a shorter heel without losing one inch of clout.

The Ankle Strap

Whether you choose a classic ankle strap, a t-strap or a cross strap, we are fond of anything that draws attention to the upper regions of a shoe. Elegant, sexy and with added sturdiness, a sassy ankle strap can take an outfit from ho-hum to OMG instantly. 

Pair these babies with just about anything, but because ankle straps are your legs’ very best friend, it’s a great idea to let them come out to play together.  

If heels aren’t your thing, you’re in luck. Ankle straps, t-straps and cross straps are just as stylish in a flat version.  

It’s All in the Details:

Shoe-lery: Jewelry isn’t just for your body anymore. Look for chained, beaded and altogether blinged-out elements on your favorite shoes this season. 

Animal Prints: All of the animals are in this season. Pair them with your favorite pieces and call yourself Queen of the Jungle. 

Florals: We never tire of blooms. Go bold with large flowers or opt for smaller posies for an air of subtlety. 

Fluff: You may feel like you’re wearing your bedroom slippers, but isn’t that half the fun and all the comfort of it?

Vibrant Colors: Bold color is the way, even in the dead of winter. Toss the notion that intense color is to be reserved only for summer and spring right out the window. Bowing down to old-fashioned rules is so passé. •

About Kimberly N. Bonéy

Proud wife and mom, is a freelance writer, designer, up-cycler and owner of Herstory Vintage. When she’s not working, she is joyfully wielding jewelry-making tools and paintbrushes in her studio. Antique shops, vintage boutiques, craft stores and bead shops are her happy place.

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