While the ballet flat has emerged as the go-to shoe for stylish women, another contender for slip-on style and comfort has emerged this season. Breaking out of the traditional menswear mold, loafers are stepping out in a myriad of colors, sizes, and price ranges.
Traditionally worn by men, loafers were introduced in the United States in the 1940′s. This season; however, is a witness to just how much things have changed as many of the styles being designed today focus on women wearers.
While the luxury fabric, velvet, is often associated with these slip-on shoes, designers are shaking things up with everything from studs and embroidery to tassels and tipped-toes.
The loafer’s low heel provides support and style as they can be wrapped in metal or fabric such as the case with these Charlotte Olympia embroidered velvet flats (right). The Charlotte’s Web flats take a cue from a mixture of trends, combining embroidery, rich velvet, and a stylish heel for an altogether eye-catching look.
Olympia isn’t the only one taking inspiration from the everyday. Even Marc Jacobs is taking a cue from canine couture with these shorty leather-appliquéd velvet loafers (below). Alexander McQueen has also added embellishments to the traditional, including sequin skulls.
We can’t go without mentioning Charles Philip Shanghai – he has mastered the lady-like loafer, combining textures like satin and prints which see pass the traditional and add a dimension of wonder and even some sparkle. These smoking slippers combine the loafer-like tongue yet forgo the heel for stylish comfort at its best.
Some soles even unite the styles of the season, such as these Giuseppe Zanotti crystal-embellished striped grosgrain loafers, which nod to the classic look of black and white with a touch of sparkle for added flair. These Nicholas Kirkwood glitter-finished suede loafers combine the best of black and blue.
With its simple style, the loafer is the perfect accompaniment to a pair of trousers or dark denim. So step into something more comfortable for a day at the office or an easy day to night look.