Update Your Wardrobe - Basic Shoes and Sandals

Fill in the holes in your wardrobe- A great list of shoe and sandal basics as well as links to basic tops and basic bottoms.

These past few weeks, you and I have been going through your closet looking for holes. Not like holes in the walls, although with three boys running around at my house I'm sure I have some of those, but holes in your wardrobe basics. We've gone over TEES AND TOPS and JEANS AND PANTS. Today we are going over SHOES AND SANDALS. I think shoes are hard because they are pretty seasonal. Because of that, this list is especially for spring and summer, but I wear most of these suggestions year-round. It is great to have more than these suggestions or variations of them, but for an everyday casual-ish wardrobe, these are my recommendations. (I realize that if you work, you may need a few dressier options thrown in as well.)

Fill in the holes in your wardrobe- A great list of shoe and sandal basics as well as links to basic tops and basic bottoms.
1. Strappy Flat Brown Sandal - If you haven't bought a new pair of brown or tan flat sandals in the last year or two, go do it now. I suggest a strappy style because those are very current and will update whatever you wear with them. I like brown or tan because they will work with almost anything. You could also grab a black pair, and a colored or embellished pair would be great additions too. This shoe will get you the farthest, so pick one you love. Wear it with shorts, jeans, skirts or dresses. It will work to dress up or dress down an outfit.

2. Neutral Sneaker - I tried to stay away from sneakers for as long as I could, but I have actually really embraced some styles of them. My favorite neutral sneaker is the white or off-white Converse low-top. I wear mine with everything, and I think a very neutral colored pair is a great basic. I also love the Vans style slip on in a light neutral color for spring and summer. Wear these with shorts, graphic tees, sweatshirts, knit skirts, or even casual dresses.

3. Fashion Sneaker - As a SAHM, cute sneakers really go far, so having a colored or printed pair in addition to a neutral really is beneficial. I wear my neutral pair with bright or patterned outfits, and I wear my 'fashion' sneakers with my neutral tees and jeans. My favorite option right now is a leopard slip-on, but the lilac Converse or the mint New Balance are awesome too. This shoe style works great with graphic tees, white tees, blue jeans, and really any solids or stripes.

4. Neutral Wedge - I don't wear heels often. I'm not sure where most fashion bloggers wear all of the heels that they style on their blogs, but even if I wasn't a SAHM, I don't think heels would be my shoe choice very often. I prefer wedges, and I think they give you the most bang for your buck. A tan or beige neutral wedge is the perfect dressier shoe for warm weather. It dresses everything up just a little. Try a black pair too, or even gray or white. Wear these with dresses, skirts, boyfriend jeans and a nice tee, or skinny jeans and blouse.

5. Ankle Boot - The ankle boot really has become common place in the last year, and it is here to stay. Ankle boots are a great year-round shoe because they can be dressed for warm or cool weather. I suggest a neutral gray/brown with a low heel if you are trying them out for the first time. Wear these with shorts, skirts, dresses, and even jeans in warm weather and then with jeans or corduroys and sweaters in the fall.

6. Ballet Flat - This is another style that works well for most of the year. I love that you can get a ballet flat in almost any color or print. If you only choose one, go for nude, but if you can, grab black and a bright color as well. Everyone should have at least one pair of ballet flats in their closet. They are comfortable, they can be casual or dressy, and you can find a pair for any occasion.

And those are my picks! Like I've said before, you don't have to go buy exactly anything that I recommend, but if you find you are missing some on the list, consider whether the missing styles could work for you. Will they make your current wardrobe stretch farther? I'm betting they will!

Did I miss any of your shoe essentials? What is your go-to shoe right now?


  1. Salt water sandals. My favorite. I have an old black pair and hubby just surprised me with a navy pair. One pair of shoes on my list this year is a pair of converse. Of course I am so cheap, that I am looking at yard sales and thrift stores. Fingers crossed I find some. Thanks for doing this list, I think you are spot on with your suggestions.

  2. Love love love all of them! I got a leopard pair of the slip on sneakers. Haven't gotten a Chance to wear them yet. I do have a bit of a converse addiction so target is nice for buying colorful ones to add to my all stars.

  3. I just got the Steve Madden ones above. They're AMAZING. WELL WORTH THE $69! Perfect for moms!

  4. What about a nude pump! I wrote a whole blog post on why they are essential if you want to check it out : ) http://www.yaelsteren.com/must-have-nude-pumps/

  5. This is a great post! :) I just got a cute pair of Saucony Originals Bullet in black and gray for my neutral sneaker and I still would love a pair of ankle boots, but otherwise I am covered!

  6. I have a very tight budget for my new dress so this amazing deal on this dress was beyond perfect! Everyone found it stunning, I highly recommend it.
    Kate Spade scarf


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