Topshop try to make “sensible” shoes fashionable

I swear to God, I had these exact shoes in primary school. In fact, everyone I knew had them.

I didn’t choose them for myself, I hasten to add. They were chosen by my parents as the “practical” choice of shoe to wear with my school uniform, and man, but I hated those shoes. They were everything my much-younger self didn’t want to wear (I used to dream of the day my feet would grow to size 3, because in my innocence I believed that ALL shoes of that size and above were high heels, and that my parents would therefore have no choice but to either let me wear them, or force me to go barefoot*), and as far as I was concerned, they were the absolute antithesis of “style”. I still see schoolgirls walking around Edinburgh wearing the same kind of shoes now, and I’d imagine they hate them every bit as much as I did. Or maybe not. Because these shoes don’t come from some “sensible” shoe shop, the type your mother would drag you into, kicking and screaming, as a child. No, they come from Topshop, the UK’s foremost fashion chain, famed for its runway-influenced, designer-led clothing.

This makes me want to cry.

Are sensible shoes becoming fashionable? Are we making a return to schoolgirl style, possibly with pleated tartan skirts and chunky blazers to compliment the tasseled loafres? It would seem so. And don’t get me wrong: I’m all for comfort. (Well, kinda.) I get that not everyone wants to (or is able to) wear heels, and that sometimes flats have to be the order of the day. I just don’t think I’m going to be able to reconcile myself to wearing the same shoes as an adult that I wore as an 11-year-old.

What about you, though? Assuming you don’t have those horrible “school shoe” associations, what do you think of these? And how would you wear them?

(They’re £5o at Topshop, if you want to buy them, by the way.)

* My parents would have gone with the “barefoot” option. I know it.


  • ew ew ew ew ew ew ew!!!! i had a similar pair and I always dreamed of murdering them!
    School memories aside, those shoes are HIDEOUS! I would never wear them, but the world is a weird place I’m sure some model or something will wear it and they’ll be described as being “fashion forward” or something. I don’t care what people say though, those are disgusting :/

  • They’re awful. Honestly, there are fashionable shoes that are close enough to sensible for me to never, ever, EVER even consider needing something like that. I’d rather wear ballet flats as far as sensibility goes, or something like Elie Tahari Jaden Sneaker which looks amazingly comfortable and is still adorable.

    These are just a crime. They belong on your other blog, Amber!

    • Totally agree with Skyler. I wouldn’t wear them because they are ugly!! I do wear flats for walking from the train station to my work, but sexy flats!!! (and when I get to work, on go the heels!)

  • Oh dear, I remember wearing shoes like this to school, because they were — the fashion at the time! We wore them with thigh-high socks (black or navy) with short grey skirts (school uniform) with a split at the back that showed plenty of thigh above the socks. Nice…

  • Oh goodness, I had shoes like this too when I was in elementary school. Had ’em in this gross shade of blue I thought was sooo pretty. I think they were suede. Yuck!

    I actually like flats a lot and have a bunch of cute pairs. But I would never wear these.

  • Well, I’m not feeling as horrified as everyone else, perhaps the practical teacher in me is coming through. I just think they’re dull and sensible shoes have been done with a bit more fun by other people (can I refer here to my Clarks obsession).

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