Professional Wednesdays: Shoes You Can Use

Shoes can make or break an outfit.  A pair of sleek new stilettos can breathe life into an old, staple dress.  While a pair of beat up, clunky pumps can tear down even the most stylish new outfit.  Here are the eight pairs of shoes that capture the best of fall style for the office.


This Penelope Shoe from Banana Republic ($128) is selling out fast.  The shoe comes in either oxblood or slate blue.  The unique shape of the vamp and the chic ankle strap perfectly meld vintage and modern styles.  Pair these shoes with a charcoal sheath dress and simple jewelry.


Leopard is a fall/winter must for me.  It adds punch to neutral separates.  This Tory Burch Elizabeth pair ($295) has a perfectly simple shape with a great print–not too big, not too small, not too yellow.  For a less expensive pair, I like both these J.Crew D’orsay flats ($198) and Abound Sloane Flats ($39).


How do you wear nude-to-you shoes in the fall?  You buy them in suede.  These Sam Edelman Nixon pumps ($129) have a on-trend mesh accent to give them a little oomph.  Looking for shoes in your skintone?  The website can help.


When purchasing a pair of booties, look for a pair that come up high enough to slide seamlessly under trousers.  These Ralph Lauren Pashia ($139) are perfect for pants or a skirt.  The padded insole and rubber outsole should also make them fairly comfortable.


Flats that mix masculine and feminine elements are very hot right now.  My friend Meghan speaks highly of these M.Gemi Stellatto flats ($198) for both style and comfort.  For something less expensive, try these Isola Christie flats.


These LK Bennett Melinda Pumps ($345) blend the playful femininity of a Mary Jane with a more grown-up silhouette.  They take the basic black heel and make it interesting.  I’m also smitten with this pointy-toe pair from SJP that couldn’t be more modern.  If you’re looking for something under-$150, these Louis et Cie pumps with a mix of textures are stunning.


These Beckett boots from Via Spiga ($395) are a nice mix of professional and casual.  They would pair very nicely with a brown leather pencil skirt and a chiffon blouse.  These tan leather Dune boots with a block heel are also very chic, and just $110.


The lace-up flat trend continues into the fall season with these gorgeous Steve Madden Sunshine flats ($69).  Target offers their suede lace-up flats in several colors.  Off5th’s Estyn flats look more expensive than their price tag, but if you want to splurge, Loeffler Randall is the way to go.



  1. missattymaam says:

    I bought seven pairs of shoes from Lands End for work. They’re so comfortable! Pointed wedge flats, printed pumps, two-tone riding boots and suede booties. I’m in court every day and on my feet all day, these have really held up well, plus Lands End guarantees all their products with no question returns.

    August 24, 2016/Reply
  2. Meghan says:

    Yes to the M.Gemi Stellatos! Really love mine and hope they’ll bring back the exact style. Thanks for the shoutout! xx

    August 24, 2016/Reply
  3. Janet says:

    Great info – thank you! I have a follow-up question…

    If you were going to buy one pair of boots/booties with plans to wear them for 3-5 seasons, what would you look for? Booties or boots? Suede or leather? Pointed, almond, round, or square toe? Flat, mid, or high heal? Black or tan? I live in the midwest, and we get cold weather and snow, but not an excessive amoun of either. I work in a business-casual office environment. Thanks to any of you who can help me narrow down the options!

    August 26, 2016/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I would probably look for boots, knee high, leather, almond toe, with either no heel or a smaller heel (less than 3″). As to color, it would depend on my wardrobe. For me, brown would be best, but it depends on what colors you like to wear. I’d pay a cobbler to treat the leather, and I would would wipe them off with a towel regularly to avoid salt degradation.

      August 26, 2016/Reply
      • Janet says:

        Thanks, Belle – much appreciated!

        August 29, 2016/Reply