Having seen all of the Ready-to-Wear Spring 2016 collections, it’s clear that we are FINALLY in a fashion era that supports many different styles of comfortable footwear. The assortment of trendy footwear is wide and deep, with something for everyone. And most styles are relatively versatile, supporting the irregular outfit juxtapositions that are so characteristic of modern style. Another reason to love fashion more than ever at the moment. 

Flats, low heels, mid heels and high heels are equally trendy. Chunky styles are as important as daintier refined styles. Colours are as popular as neutrals. Solids are as popular as patterns. Light neutrals make a bigger statement than dark neutrals, and earth-toned footwear is big. Maximal design details reign supreme, as simple and sleek takes a back seat. The sturdy block heel across low and high heights is THE heel for the season (and will be for seasons to come.)

I’ve identified 20 trendy footwear styles for Spring and Summer, but many of them can be worn year round in milder climates. In many instances, you can cover two or three trends in one shoe, like a flatform sneaker with fringe, or a round square toe ankle strap pump with ornate heels. There is a lot of information with many examples, so I’m making things a bit more manageable by splitting the trends between two posts.

1. Lace-Up Flats & Heels

This is one of the trendiest looks of them all. Flat or heeled, open-toe or closed toe, it’s all about the lace-up detailing that runs up the vamp of the shoe, and ties at the ankle. The style works well with cropped pants because it closes the gap. I thought that this stye would be uncomfortable but after trying on several pairs, I was pleasantly surprised by the comfortable options. 

2. Flatforms

The flatform or “creeper” is a platform shoe without the incline. This is a way to add height to your outfit without arching the foot. The platform heights vary, and you’ll find this style of heel in any style of shoe. Personally, I cannot walk in them because the soles don’t bend as I stride, but others have no problem walking in this style of shoe. 

3. Platforms & Clogs

Think ‘70s platforms and wedges in all sorts of shoe styles, but especially sandals and clogs. Platforms can be small or large. Platforms used to be heavy shoes, but these days they’ve found ways to make them more lightweight. 

4. Tassels & Fringe

Think of tassels and fringe on any style of shoe. 

5. Sneakers & Sneaker Hybrids

Sneakers continue to make a meaningful fashion statement, and Sporty Luxe or Athleisure outfits are as popular as ever with the masses. All sorts of sneaker styles and sneaker hybrids can be incorporated into outfits these days. And I personally don’t think that wedge sneakers are dated. 

6. Sandal Booties, Cut-Out Booties & Cage Heels

The sandal bootie, cut-out bootie and cage heel is still going strong. It’s ultra high vamp makes it a slam dunk to wear with cropped pants. 

7. Booties

The low and high shaft bootie can be worn with just about any outfit these days. I vote non-black booties for Spring and Summer. Think light neutrals, metallics, animal print and colours. 

8. ‘90s Footwear

There’s lots of ‘90s footwear trending at the moment, most of which is chunky and heavy. Lug soles, gigantic loafers, sandals with very broad straps and buckles, and T-strap pumps and chunky oxfords. 

9. Ankle Straps

Think pumps and sandals with statement ankle straps with flat or higher heels. Ankle straps are positioned ABOVE or on the ankle bone and not below it like most regular sandals. Ankle straps can be broad or narrow. 

10. Oxfords

The flat oxford is still going strong, although heeled versions are coming through too. Styles can be laced or laceless, and the soles can be delicate or chunky. 

Of these trends, I’m all over the ankle strap styles, oxfords, high shaft booties, and want to get some lace-up styles too. How about you? Stay tuned for the next set of trendy footwear styles that I’ll be posting tomorrow.