Mirror, Mirror, Which is the Prettiest Flat Sandal of All?

25th August

The most flattering of the flat sandals I have seen this summer are without a doubt, flip flop sandals. Far be it for me to tell you, dear reader, what you should fancy…

thong sandals

…but let me present my case to you. 

Here is a listing of the least to most flattering flat sandal styles I’ve spotted, in preferential order. I would be very interested in knowing by the end of this article, if I have convinced you to subscribe to the same hierarchy (the list does not include closed-toe sandals, by the way – although I like them, they just don’t seem like “real” sandals!)

5) Flat sandals with horizontal straps

Although these are the sandals which least favor the shape of the foot, I have to confess that my newest pair falls into this category. (I bought them for walking hours on end on vacation.)

The problem?

A strap which crosses the width of the foot at a right angle not only breaks up the leg-to-foot silhouette, but it also creates a stubby-foot/toes syndrome. The effect is even more noticeable when the color of the straps contrast with your skin tone and/or there are lots of them. It is bad enough that these sandals have no heel to give the foot a prettier, more arched shape; this style also makes a flat foot look flatter! 

Flat sandals


One solution:

As you saw above, a sandal with horizontal lines is more flattering with trousers than with a short dress or shorts – since it prevents a continuous line from the leg to the end of the foot. It does pair well, however, with a maxi skirt. 

Flat sandals


Another solution:

Flesh-toned sandals! This is my newest pair, which nearly blends in with my skin tone to provide more leg-lengthening by not cutting up – as noticeably – the leg-to-foot line. 

flesh-toned sandals

4) Classic T-strap sandal

This next sandal has a strap running lengthwise down the front, but which is cut off on either side by horizontal straps. Because of the horizontal lines, arguments against the former sandal apply to this one as well. However, the vertical strap helps to give the foot a somewhat more tapered-looking shape.

Flat sandals


T-strap sandals


3) Gladiator sandal

The gladiator sandal is in a class by itself. The more the straps, the more it resembles a shoe with peepholes. Sure it breaks the leg off at the ankle but offers so much in return: Cubist-like sectioning, which is loveliness itself.

Flat sandals

New York City

It gets better:

2) Sandal with ankle straps

The following sandal scores points for being sexy, even sans heel. A strap around the ankle accentuates that most delicate-looking part of the leg. Wearing it with a short-hemmed dress helps offset the breaking up of that leg-line.

Flat sandals

From left to right, Milan-NYC-Milan

1) Flip flop sandal

Notice how the flip flop sandals below give the foot a narrower, more elegant appearance? Granted, not all flip flop sandals are created equal. The one below and to the left, for example is a hybrid thong-gladiator style, but it has that general tendency of other flip flop sandals to extend the leg-to-foot line. 

Thong sandals


A bow on the thong sandals at center (below) makes them almost look as if they belonged to my least favorite category. But notice the absence of a strap across the toes – very helpful! – and the narrowness of the strap near the ankle. Silhouette obstruction is minimal.

Flat sandals


Although a strap in between the toes may take some initial getting used to, in my experience, it is a sensation soon forgotten.

Flat sandals

The sandal below is a hybrid: flip flop with cross strap and ankle strap. Why not?! The cross strap is thin and flesh-toned, while the thong feature elongates the silhouette.

Flat sandals


So, mirror mirror, which is the prettiest of all?

flip flop sandals

As I looked at muses from New York and Milan in flat sandals, I came upon a dilemma. One of the muses I shot in horizontal strap sandals (below, to the right) looks fantastic.

Milan and NYC

Milan and NYC

It just goes to show that there is an exception to every rule, especially when it comes to style. Which is your favorite flat sandal this summer and why?

XO, Janea





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