How do I pair shoes with my outfit?

Shoes are such a big part of an outfit, and there are many factors to consider when choosing the right pair.  Here we’ll give you a handful of tips to make things just a little bit simpler!

First and foremost is comfort – consider where you’re going and what you’ll be doing.  While stilettos help legs look longer, leaner and more toned, they’re not as practical for a day at the beach.  If needed, pack a pair of comfy walking flats or flip-flops in your purse to slip on between those hot heels.  When you need some height but also need to be comfy, reach for a wedge.  Wedges are also ideal for warm-weather events – unless, of course, you do want to aerate the lawn with your stilettos.

Think, also, about your height and hem length.  For instance, shorter gals in maxi dresses can go for the extra height of a wedge to elongate the legs.  For those girls with supermodel-height, pair a smaller heel or boho-chic flat with a short hemline.  But, to be simple and safe use this general rule: the shorter the hemline the shorter the heel height (helps to avoid any “Pretty Woman” situations).

Once you’ve determined comfort level and heel-height, it’s down to choosing a color and style.  This is where things can sometimes get tricky – we’re here to simplify.  Heels no longer need to match your outfit to a ‘T’ – sometimes mis-matched is better.  When it comes to pairing colored shoes, it’s easiest to think of it in terms of the color wheel.  The image below lists types of color combinations that are most appealing and always work: primary, analogous, secondary, complementary, intermediate and split-complementary.  Nude shoes are always flattering in ranges of whites, creams, greys, blacks, browns and animal print.

When thinking of the style of shoe that is ideal, start by choosing one that is seasonally appropriate (you know…sandals in summer, boots in winter).  To add a bit of playfulness to your shoe rotation, mix seasonal shoes in the off season.  Grab a short bootie on a summer evening with a sundress or shorts.  Or, pair a summer wedge with your fall jeans and chunky knit sweater.

We hope these basic tips will make it that much easier to pick the perfect shoe for your next outfit.


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