It’s a tale as old as time; boy meets girl, girl meets boy and they live happily ever after. Oh give over what am I talking about? I’m here to give you the real scoop, forget boys, this post is about the shoes that will make you cry, about the ankle boots that will be slaying your entire existence and most of all the shoes that will turn your frown upside down. Because ladies and gentlemen, let me tell you a little story about the well known ‘game of love’. You fall in and out of love with the people you date but the love you feel for shoes, is a love that ‘never goes out of fashion’. So while you might be broke and single as the day you were born, there is nothing wrong with indulging in a good ‘session’ of retail therapy, especially if it has ‘I am so over my ex.com’ written all over those babies. So whether you are a ‘mule kinda gal’ who likes to put their best foot forward or want to stomp your way into the club, while you drop it like it is ‘hawt’, here are five key ankle boot trends that you need to try in 2018.
Mules: For The Ladies Who Put Their Best Foot Forward
After hiding our feet in large clompy over the knee boots, there is nothing more ‘freeing’ than allowing your toes to burst out and step into the sunlight. But while heeled sandals might be a ‘little cold’ for the beginnings of spring, Uppersole Ankle Boots, offers a wide selection of glossy ‘mule boots’ that keep your feet warm but at the same time allows them to flirt with the ‘springtime fever’. So whether you are feeling a gladiator esque ‘lace up mule’ that is a cross between Ancient Greece and modern day or want a mule that will have you stepping onto the runway, like you are auditioning for Britain’s Next Top Model, never underestimate the power of a great shoe. But what might surprise you about the humble mule, is not its ability to transform your feet into butterflies (although that is a magic trick that I would love to see) but its ‘transformation’ from an ankle boot worn to command power in court to a fashion boot that is worn to make a statement of power for ‘fun’ as opposed to legal uniform attire.
While mule’s predate Ancient Rome, where they were worn by the three highest magistrates in court, today’s mules are classified as fashion boots that grew in popularity during the sixties, where the attitude of anything goes was applied to ‘fashion looks’. But before the rebellious rejection of conformist fashion ideals in the sixties, the mule was also worn in the bedroom, with Comtesse d’Olonne, a ‘society beauty’ wearing soft red mules to church, setting a precedent for more evocative and ‘daring’ variations of the mule trend becoming popular in the French Court, during the Marie Antoinette era. The ‘bedroom shoe’ as it was so often nicknamed, would peep provocatively out of rich embroidered gowns and while it has gone in and out of favour more times than you can eat chips in a minute, the humble mule has once again put it’s best foot forward for the spring/summer street styler’s wishlist . Question is, can you brave the cold?
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Shop The Monochrome Mule Look
Chelsea Boots: From Victorian To Modern Fashion Culture
Chelsea Boots are often associated with the ‘Cool Kid’ fashion crowd, worn nonchalantly with floaty maxi dresses and ripped denim jeans. But unbeknownst to many the ‘Chelsea Boot’ has been worn by both men and women for over 200 years, as the design and invention of the Chelsea Boot is attributed to J. Sparkes-Hall, who was bootmaker to the late Queen Victoria. Like the case with many ‘boots’, Chelsea boots were popular with men and women because they were practical; the vulcanized rubber made the shoes incredibly comfortable to walk and ride in and Queen Victoria’s endorsement, helped Chelsea Boots be a popular shoe choice. However it wasn’t until the mid fifties that Chelsea Boots bore resemblance to the shoes that we have today, when the ‘Chelsea Set’ – as the media called them- wore Chelsea boots to symbolize a new fashion movement, that re-interpreted the traditional ‘Chelsea’ image.
From unexpected appearances in films like The Star Wars Trilogy (as worn by the Stormtroopers) to celebrity endorsements like George Harrison, the Chelsea Boots have become a cult icon in the ‘shoe world’. The Chelsea boot remains a popular ‘springtime trend’ because it keeps you warm but at the same time ‘patent variations’ will help prevent against the rain too. And while Chelsea boots might not be as light as ‘mules’ they are certainly one of the more versatile ankle boots that you can wear this season. Whether you pair them with denim cutoff shorts or a dress, the Chelsea Boot will bring the ‘cool factor’ to any outfit.
Shop The Monochrome & Burgundy Chelsea Boots Look
Shop Chelsea Boots
Block Heel Studded Ankle Boots
When it comes to fashion, the industry likes to serve us up fresh offerings of ‘painful torture’ for our feet with boots and heels that cripple our toes and give us blisters all day long. Which is why it is so surprising that among the beautiful but not very practical ‘mule boots’ of the world, catwalks are now featuring comfortable, small block heel ankle boots that will closet your toes in a warm and welcoming space. After all, nothing says bliss more than an ankle boot that A. doesn’t cause blisters, B keeps your feet warm and C. doesn’t look like you just stuck a bunch of Crocs on your feet ‘for comfort’. And let me tell you something, ‘Crocs’ are a fashion crime that will have the fashion police calling at your house and throwing you in jail for wearing such hideous shoes. No offence.
So why a ‘block’ as opposed to stiletto heel I hear you ask? Well it’s simple, as much as I love stilettos my feet don’t and they practically cry out for days, begging me to not torture my feet again. A block heel is something that not only enables you to walk in comfort, but is stylish, a shoe you can dance in and can take you from casual to dressy, all in one shoe. Now how is that for a shoe powerhouse?
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Embroidered Ankle Boots: For The Sassy Senorita
Ankle boots as you might know by now were a staple in Victorian wardrobes, but embroidered ankle boots were another story entirely. Slippers often fashioned out of gold and gemstones like rubies, were richly embroidered with ornate patterns that were modeled on nature like ‘flowers and birds’, but when it came to boots they were plain and often without decoration, as they served a functional as opposed to decorative purpose. While the ‘Golden Age’ of the Western Fashion era used embroidery to an extent, it wasn’t until the noughties that ’embroidered boots’ as we know them today became popular, with retailers like Public Desire fashioning embroidered boots out of cutwork and patchwork embroidery, to give a decidedly oriental flair. Although embroidered boots are ‘fairly modern’ there have been examples of them cropping up throughout history to denote power or status.
For example Priests during the 11th century would wear leather boots that would feature embroidered cuffs which represented their commitment to not only the church but also against evil, as many of these priests were also soldiers as well. But in other instances embroidered boots were featured in prominent eras like in the 1940’s Western Culture, where Cowboy boots were fashioned out of ‘leather’ and other exotic skins, with decorative stitching and cut outs on Cowboy ‘roper boots’. Today thankfully we have cruelty free and vegan friendly embroidered boot varieties but part of what makes them so magical for spring is its large use of the floral emblem motif which links to the regeneration of flowers in spring.
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The Beatle Cuban Heeled Ankle Boot:For Those Who Like To Live Their Life On The Edge
The ‘Beatle Boot’ is a variant of the ‘Chelsea Boot’ featuring a low Cuban heel with a sharp pointed toe and was worn by both sexes. Made popular by the aforementioned band The Beatles, the boot was founded in 1961, where John Lennon and Paul McCartney saw Chelsea Boots and commissioned four pairs with a Cuban heel. Direct descendants of the ‘flamboyant’ flamenco boot, the Beatle Boot were very popular with rock bands and artists during the middle 1960’s and had a brief resurgence in popularity in the early 2000’s as well. Today the Beatle Boot has been in and out of fashion more times than you could time travel, but in a commitment to retro nostalgia many catwalks have used the Beatle Boot, with a low Cuban heel to compliment its ‘Spanish and Mediterranean collections. The Beatle boot is being worn with everything from tassel embroidered dresses to flared trousers and the great thing about the Beatle Boot is how it is worn by both sexes.
A unisex boot, the Beatle allows men, as well as women to wear ‘high heels’ and notable wearers have included fictional characters like Sid from Hey Arnold and musicians like the late Great Micheal Jackson, who like David Bowie was known for challenging gender boundaries and rejecting traditional expectations of ‘masculinity’. The Beatle boot proved that when it came to fashion, regardless of gender no shoe or clothing piece should be confined to one set gender binary and the same connotation exists today. Today more than ever artists like Jaden Smith are constantly pushing the confines of traditional gendered uniform, and part of that ‘fashion makeup’ is wearing shoes that are open to ‘all sexes’. So whether you choose to wear mules or Cuban ankle boots this season, choose the ankle boot that best represents you!
Shop ‘The Beatle Cuban Boot’
What Is Your Favourite Ankle Boot Trend To Wear This Spring And Why?
Please note this is a collaborative post with Upper Sole but all thoughts and opinions are my own.