Style & Then Some

Orthopaedic chic: How the ugly shoe is dominating this season

Let me paint a picture for you. It’s a summer day, two or three years ago. Fellow blogger pal Abby and I are walking through a Midlands town that will remain anonymous. We’re chatting, when she abruptly disappears from view, and ends up in a strange kind of splat on the concrete. Abby is a tall girl, all gamine arms and legs, so when I’ve finally steadied myself from the paralysing laughter, I help her up. ‘It’s because I’m wearing flatform clogs’ she sighs. ‘I was foiled by my orthopaedic shoes!’

And since that fateful day, we’ve both loved the fugly shoe. Clearly, fugly doesn’t always mean practical, and even the flattest of footwear can topple ya. Nevertheless, the usually high-arched world of Fashion (capital F) has been for a number of seasons embracing the ugly flat. And long may it reign.

I like flats for many reasons. When I wear heels I feel oddly more like a man in drag than anything else. I dislike the clip-clop of someone with occasion footwear, and despite many attempts, I still walk like a constipated duck when wearing anything above three inches. But in equal measure, I really do hate boring flats. The black ballet pump, the pink dollie, the basic thong sandal – all yawn. If heels were previously the hallmark of a Fashion girl, then boring, school-appropriate flats are essentially saying ‘I ran out of inspiration by my ankles’.

So where does that leave us? Thankfully, the ordinarily ludicrous world of high fashion and the everyday life of us mere mortals have called a truce, and it’s called the ugly shoe. Stemming from the city-dwellers’ penchant for garish trainers for the commute, ugly shoes are still practical, comfy and versatile enough to actually wear day in day out, but with enough pretentious flair and nod to man-repelling fashion to keep the stylists happy. You can think to yourself, ‘my feet are so ugly, they’re cool.’ (Note: the entire SS14 lookbook of Zara agrees with me). Not to mention that my mother really does approve when I show her my Birkenstocks.

The high street is awash with ugly footwear, so go wild – your bunions will thank you.

Leather Crossover Sandals, Zara, 2014, Flatforms, Ugly

Leather Crossover Sandals, Zara, £59.99

Disco Leather Mules, ASOS, 2014, Leopard print, Flats

Disco Leather Mules, ASOS, £45

Fang Double Buckle Flatforms, Topshop, 2014, Summer, Flats

Fang Double Buckle Flatforms, Topshop, £48

YRU Lowf Kitty White Slipper Shoes, ASOS, 2014, Summer, Flats

YRU Lowf Kitty White Slipper Shoes, ASOS, £45

Platform Wedge with Velcro Fastening, Zara, Summer, 2014, Flats

Platform Wedge with Velcro Fastening, Zara, £39.99


One comment on “Orthopaedic chic: How the ugly shoe is dominating this season

  1. Rainbows and Polka Dots
    April 10, 2014

    loved this post and your writing style! x

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This entry was posted on April 10, 2014 by in Style and tagged , , , , , , .
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