The ‘Sensible Shoes’ trend at Zara

lucite heel shoes from Zara
block heeled court shoes from Zara

low heeled pumps from Zara

[All shoes: ZARA]

One thing that’s really been jumping out at me as I browse the “new in” sections of some of my favourite shoe stores recently is the number of what I’d call “sensible shoes” on display. Now, don’t get me wrong: the heels on the top two pairs on this page are actually relatively high, and one pair is lucite, which isn’t exactly something I’d call “sensible”. “Sensible” is a relative term when it comes to footwear, however, and although the heels aren’t low on all but the third pair, the blocky shapes, combined with the rounded toes, do have a somewhat matronly feel to me.

These are the kind of shoes I can only really imagine wearing if I absolutely HAD to: if I needed a pair of “comfy” shoes in a certain colour, say, and was going to be on my feet all day, but was determined to still wear heels of some description. They’re definitely NOT the kind of shoes I’d look at and think, “OMG, I absolutely MUST have those!” and as those are the types of shoes I’m most interested in, these are the kind I’d normally ignore altogether, dismissing them as frumpy and unflattering – the kind of shoe that would drag an outfit down rather than giving it that certain something.

In an ideal world, every pair of shoes would be in, the “OMG, LOVE!” category, but, of course, this isn’t an ideal world, so sometimes we do end up having to wear the rather more boring shoes, too. I’m definitely not welcoming the fact that this kind of style seems to be becoming “fashionable” at the moment, but I’m sure there’s someone out there thinking, “Thank God! At last someone’s making shoes that don’t have stiletto heels and pointy toes!”, so this one’s for you!

What DO you think of the trend for “sensible” shoes, though?


  • Descriptions for footwear are subject to individual interpretation or opinion. Of course, the only ones that really matter would be the wearer’s perspective and choice. You’ve probably tried on some shoes just for the sake of curiosity in seeing how they look and feel on you, even though they are not with in your usual taste.

  • Shoeperwoman posted this reply:
    Sure, but that doesn’t mean no one else should be allowed to voice an opinion.
    You express your opinion on almost all of the shoes I post here, despite thinking
    that the only opinion that matters is that of the person who has to wear them.
    Shouldn’t I be allowed to do the same?

    I had come to the conclusion that my comments were only noted in the abyss, since any acknowledge for anything I wrote has been sparse, if any at all. Most assuredly, should your opinions be just as important as anyone else’s and our opinions should be taken as such for we have our taste and others have theirs. You and I are part of the on-lookers to others, just like they are to us. We both have an affinity for wearing certain styles of heels, which intersects from time to time. May we both continue to find and wear the heels that fulfill our tastes.

  • I do appreciate a sensible shoe, but these are all dowdy. The middle pair in red looks like something in the discount bin at Kmart.

  • I don’t know. I could imagine wearing the red pair with some rolled up boyfriend jeans and a casual top. Would be great for a day wandering in the city.

  • If, let’s say, you divide your days between running after a toddler and being a teacher (to which job you commute on foot and via public transport), and if your husband is only an inch taller than you and you don’t fancy the Bruni/Sarkozi look every time you go out, and if you would rather spend your limited budget on something you can wear (rather than take out of the wardrobe only to occasionally stroke), then sensible shoes are necessary. Having said that, ugly ones (in which I would include those with heels wider at top than bottom), aren’t, and the quest for ones that actually have some style can become even more compelling than for people who have the choice of the full range of heels. A challenge for you?

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