If there’s one thing that has made this period of being at home bearable, it’s been the weather. It’s almost like mother nature has taken pity on our current situation and decided to send us the sunshine and warmth to help us get through it. I can only speak for London, but I swear we’ve only had about 3 rainy days since March 23rd, and May has been the best I can remember. Can you imagine if this had all happened in the bleak midwinter? I hope you’ve all been able to get out a bit and enjoy the sun this week. All this leads me very nicely onto this weeks theme, Sandals. Not just any old Sandals, but Sandals that are actually genuinely comfortable…
First up, if you’re looking for some cute, dainty strappy numbers, or anything with a heel, then best to leave now, as you’re not going to find that here. What you are going to find is 5 pairs of Sandals that I own, so know for fact are comfortable. Then a pair that I have on good authority are particularly pleasing and a bonus pair that I think will fall into this category too. Some of these Sandals could be considered downright ugly (hello Teva), but I appreciate them all because they encase my feet in a cloud of love.
There is nothing worse than buying a nice new pair of sandals, popping them on an heading out, only to find that by the time it is too far away from the house to turn back, that they are rubbing, blistering and generally behaving like a shoe arsehole. Believe me, I had my fair share of shoe arseholes and with Sandals you can’t even wear a nice thick pair of hiking socks to help break them in. I mean, you could I suppose but you might get a bit sweaty. Let’s get this Sandal Situation started…
I can remember vividly the day I wore my first pair of Birkenstocks. I bought a white pair back in 2013 when they were still relatively new to anyone under the age of 65 who didn’t live in an orthopedic commune. Ok, maybe not that niche, but you catch my drift. I wore said Sandals to Wireless Festival where I was working with little Conor Maynard (you may not remember him, he was billed as the UK’s answer to Justin Bieber for about 5 minutes). Anyway, I was feeling cool in my new Sandals, only to be ridiculed by the youth, someone even asked me if I was his mum, which was mortifying, although very much possible given that he was quite young.
BUT, I like to think I was ahead of the curve in my Mum Sandals, I mean who doesn’t have a pair these days? I do find that sometimes it takes maybe a couple of wears for your feet to fully mould into the footbed, but once they do, they are super comfortable and will last for years. I finally had to get rid of my first pair last year as the sole started to crumble, but 6 years of continuous summer wear isn’t bad. If you’re taking the plunge for the first time, I would go for the 2 strap Arizona, and not the £25 plastic ones, the suede £60 are the best.
1. River Island White Cross Tie Back Dress
2. Accessorize Leopard Print Headband
3. Cos Cotton Puff Sleeve Seersucker Dress
4. Birkenstock White Arizona Sandals
5. Birkenstock Black Milano Sandals
So, these are the real ugly sisters of Sandals. Teva are basically makers of high grade hiking sandals, although in recent years they have branched out into more fashion-type styles. Last summer I got a pair of their Hurricane XLT Sandals for my holiday to Italy. I got them knowing we would be walking the streets of Rome and Florence for hours and hours each day so I needed a proper good pair of walking sandals. They 100% did not disappoint. Not a single blister, not an ounce of rubbage was had. We did average 20,000 steps each day when we were in Rome and they were absolutely perfect. Bad news is that this style seem to be rarer than hens teeth this summer, but then again, it’s unlikely you will be walking the streets of Rome this year, so this could just be for future reference.
1. Wyse London Amara Stripe Jumper
2. John Lewis & Partners Square Sunglasses
3. The Outnet Rag and Bone Denim Shorts
4. Whistles Rosa Double Trim T Shirt
5. Teva Hurricane Sandals
6. Teva Midform Ceres Sandals
ARIZONA LOVE / NANOU BEACHWEAR SANDALS
So, if you fancy the comfort of a Teva, but want something a bit more girly then these bad boys are the ones for you. They are basically the same idea. Just basic Teva style sandals wrapped in fabric. I think Arizona Love are the originals, but Nanou beachwear are just as good. I would say the only real difference between them, other than the price, is that the Arizona Love sandals have a higher instep and the base is slightly better quality. You should really size UP on these, they do come up a bit small and you don’t want your toes hanging over the edge.
1. John Lewis x Mother Of Pearl Stripe Dress
2. Mango Double Strap Straw Basket
3. Stradivarius Midi Poplin Dress
4. Nanou Beachwear Liberty Print Wrap Sandals
5. Arizona Love Bandana Wrap Sandals
We all know that Grenson make the best, and most comfortable, boots around, so it should come as no surprise that their sandals are also top notch too. I had to admit I was a bit sceptical as real leather sandals can sometimes be hit and miss in the comfort stakes, but I have these Cassidy style ones and they were perfect from the get go. On their first outing I did a supermarket trip in them, followed by a bike ride to Ealing and walk around the park, full 10,000 steps completed and and not a sniff of blister. Thats golden in my book.
1. H&M Broderie Puff Sleeve Blouse
2. Anine Bing Empowerment Sweatshirt
3. Boden Bamburgh Shorts
4. Cos Rounded Cotton Trousers
5. Grenson Cassidy White Leather Sandals
Ok, so I have to admit I don’t own a pair of these myself, but while conducting a quick straw poll of my friends these one came up a lot as being very good indeed. I like a company that sticks to one classic style and do that very well. These Original Saltwater sandals have been a popular choice for quite a few years no so I don’t see them going anywhere anytime soon. Would look equally as good with pretty dress as they do with Jeans.
1. The Outnet DVF Printed Silk Shirt
2. Mango Coconut Palm Leaf Bag
3. Mango Regina Slouchy Jeans
4. Saltwater Red Leather Original Sandals
5. Saltwater Black Leather Original Sandals
SHOE THE BEAR MALA SANDALS
These are my bonus pair, and full disclosure I don’t own these ones yet, but I have them on order and I have high hopes. They fill a sandal hole in my wardrobe, that of being chunky and brown and even a little but sporty. I feel like they would work really well with my Khaki Trousers or jeans when it’s not shorts weather anymore. Shoe the Bear are favourites of mine, like Grenson, they also make great winter boots. If you are one of those super organised people who buy things in advance of the season then worth noting their Agda boots are currently 65% off at Office.
1. H&M Puff Sleeve Sunflower Blouse
2. Mango Reversible Bucket Hat
3. Top Shop Considered Editor Straight Jeans
4. Pimkie Lightweight Khaki Jacket
5. Wild Swans Shoe The Bear Mala Sandals
Inevitably as I was putting this blog together I came across a lot of other great looking sandals. I don’t own them, so I can’t tell you whether they are comfortable, but in case you’re not keen on any of the above foot approved versions, here’s a selection of others that took my fancy. Don’t come crying to me if they hurt though.
I hope everyone is doing OK. It feels like life is showing signs of getting a little better. I hope you all get to see some absent loved ones soon. In your sandals of course! Next week is open for ideas, I’ve had a few requests for more shorts, vest tops and summer jackets…