Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Question of the Week: Cute Flats on a Budget

Inspired by a handful of emails and friendly suggestions (special thanks Karina & Makena), Erin and I have decided to start posting some style questions from our readers. Submit your questions and fashion challenges to Sugar Rock Catwalk @ gmail.

"Where can I find cute and affordable flats that I can wear to work? I like the Tory Burch ballet flats, but they're $200."
- Krystina, New York

I have to start by saying that I'm not a fan of the Tory Burch flats. They're cute, but they are all over midtown Manhattan. I feel like it's part of the city working girl uniform - Tory Burch flats, Longchamp tote, J.Crew cardigan. It's a cute look, but where's the fun in business casual if you're going to wear something standard? Am I right?

So affordable shoe brands that I like: Jeffrey Campbell, Seychelles and Sam Edelman. Then there's your obvious mass retailers like Steve Madden, Aldo and Nine West, but I'm less fond of those brands because they feel super mass since they're at every mall. And those stores tend to do a lot of knock offs rather than "inspired by" designs, though it should be noted that Jeffrey Campbell has been making a lot of designer replicas as well.

Now for the fun part. I did a little online window shopping, and here are my picks for cute, affordable flats for the office (and play).

Sam Edelman Jeneva $130

Seychelles Headdress $74

Kelsi Dagger Tamatha $100

Jeffrey Campbell Jive-Cap $114.95

I choose these pairs because I felt like each pair was playful and still work-appropriate. The hardware and toe embellishments are both unique and sophisticated enough to add some polish and fun to any outfit. And I didn't mean to, but somehow ended up selecting a lot of snakeskin. I think snakeskin is a nice texture and look, but I never really considered myself a fan.

Side note about the Kelsi Dagger pair, they have a hidden heel! Perfect for the ladies who want a little height boost without true heels.

And if you're open to wearing plastic shoes, check out these two from Melissa. You know how much I love them. They're so easy to clean, great for those semi-rainy days and mold to your feet over time.

Melissa + Vivienne Westwood Ultragirl II Bow Black $120
Melissa Night Flocked $79

Those are my picks. Readers, do you have any other suggestions for Krystina?


Monique said...

i really love those melissa jellies you have too. thanks for the post...i'm trying to find some flats for business casual days, and i'm likin that cream pair :)

Iole said...

loving the first pair!

Lani said...

monique, thanks for the comment/reminder! i added a couple melissas to the mix. :)

krystina said...

aw thanks lani! i think i need the tamatha flats.

seriously, the tory burch flats are cute, but i will wreck my next pair of flats like i have wrecked every other pair of flats i own. and they're less appealing after our convo the other day re: the midtown uniform. ;)

Kelsey said...

I also like Arturo Chiang, every shoe I've bought from that brand has lasted me quite some time. They are nicely made and generally classic designs. I can usually find those, and Sam Edelman, Seychelles, etc. at Century 21 for the $40-100 range. Definitely worth the trip. I never buy Steve Madden or Nine West and the like anymore because they just don't stand the test of time. Awful soles, heels need to be redone way too soon after the purchase, etc.

chibi said...

This is a great post!
I'm looking for new flats and love the ones by Sam Edelman.

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