We’ve all heard of the LBD (little black dress), that perfect black dress that is your go-to for any special occasion, but what about the shoes? Everyone needs the perfect LBS (little black shoes) too! So here are my top picks from my shoe collection and the perfect moments to wear them.
P.S. In case you were wondering, Essie’s Fiji is on my toes throughout this post. The perfect neutral canvas to complement any classic black shoes.
THE STRAPPY EVENING SHOES
Taking inspiration from the glamour of the 1950s marabou mule, these shoes are the perfect touch of flirty and fun. Reminiscent of the boudoir era, you’re bound to look like a Hollywood icon wearing these! Be careful with any New York subway grates though or you might get your very own Marilyn Monroe moment. Again, originally from New Look but I found some dupes on Amazon here, although a lot of reviews do complain about their peculiar buckle, so fair warning.
THE GIANVITO ROSSI PLEXI DUPE SHOES
I think it was back in 2016 when the Gianvito Rossi plexi shoes hit the designer market and became the “IT” shoes to have. Personally, I can’t afford the £560.00 and above price tag, so I patiently waited for the high street to get the message. Couple of years later, and I got these beauties in Mango. Unfortunately, because I have wide feet, I had to go with the larger of two sizes (had they made half sizes it would have been perfect) which fit the front part of my foot but was also a bit too long, so my heel tends to slip out when I walk. Any helpful tips for that problem would be most welcome! Zara are having a real moment with plexi in their shoes this season hence I found a few similar pairs here, here and here.
THE CLASSIC PATENT COURT SHOES
These would be even more of a classic paired with a red sole, but again I can’t afford the designer price that is Louboutin, so I’ll stick with these from Dorothy Perkins (dupes here) instead. Now no one “needs” a pair of shoes but if you were to go for any pair featured in this post then I would highly recommend this style. Purely because the patent black heel is a true classic, you’ll never have to worry about it going out of style and be able to keep them for years to come.
THE ANKLE STRAP SHOES
These were my University graduation shoes, so they will always hold a special place in my heart! From Zara (very similar here and here), these have a reasonable heel height of 3” and a sturdy strap, so I was sure not to lose a shoe “à la Cinderella” or trip over my own two feet on my way up to the podium to get my diploma. They didn’t fail me then and whenever I need an elegant shoe I could potentially run in, these are my go-to, and if you’re wearing long enough trousers the ankle strap gets completely hidden and the shoe looks even more elegant and dainty (no one will know that those babies aren’t coming off any time soon).
THE ELEGANT KITTEN HEELS
Just as elegant as the ankle strap shoes above, these would complete a great workwear outfit. I got these in a sale at H&M a couple of years ago (although they do still make a very similar design here and here). The kitten heels make these shoes super comfortable to stand in for long periods of time. The slim slingback does however make these a tad less secure on your feet (with the potential of losing one if you ran in them).
Speaking of H&M sales, these cost me a whopping €5! The last of this style and in my size, what can I say people, it was fate! These follow a bit of the 90s mule trend (see below), with a large portion of the shoe located on the front part of the foot and the peep-toe effect but it has a bit of a twist… literally! There is a twist design in the satin fabric on the front part of the foot plus it’s a slingback hence it has more hold on the foot than your typical mule (these shoes were really hard to find dupes for but I found these here with no twist or these here with a crossover but no slingback). I don’t know what it is about these shoes, but they are surprisingly comfortable to wear (maybe the softness of the fabric that moulds perfectly to my slightly wider feet with zero rubbing or my perfect heel height of 3”…who knows?). Either way love these babies!
THE 90s MULES
Again, from an H&M sale (what can I say? I was on a roll when it came to finding cute shoes in their sale), I really wanted a pair of black mules as a throwback to the 90s trend. As I grew up in the 90s I never really got to try out this particular trend, I was a kid, so I stuck to more practical shoes (per parental wisdom) and less the fashionable ones. Now in my late (sniff) twenties I get to make all the fashionable and less practical decisions!!! Although to be fair, with their chunky heels and minimalist style (Zara have a really cool take on them here and New Look a summery woven version here) these shoes are pretty handy to slip on and off at lightning speed when you’re trying to catch the mailman deliveries! Also I’ve been on a little bit of a Buffy The Vampire Slayer binge recently (never watched it originally on TV so playing catch-up), and with these I could fit right in with the cast! #goals
THE ASYMMETRIC BOOTS
These I would personally consider to be boots although they could be interpreted as mule slingbacks I guess? Depends on how much of the foot has to be covered for you to consider shoes to be boots. I love the asymmetric design theses ones have plus with their thin high heels they really do feel more modern while still maintaining a slight hint to the 90s mule (with the covered front part of the foot and the peep-toe). I couldn’t find any exact same design but found three pairs that I thought were very modern/geometric looking here, here and here.
So there you have it; my top fail-safe black shoe designs that are part of my essential LBS (little black shoes) list.
Any designs you think I missed out? I know I’m still missing the plain one strap ones, but I have yet to find my perfect pair! Hey that means I have room to grow, right…right? I know my wardrobe would highly disagree (I have a shoe problem what can I say?!).
Which is your favourite/essential?