What's the winter version of the work flat?
October 20, 2009 11:23 AM   Subscribe

Can you help a gal transition from summer flats to a more winter-appropriate work shoe?

Winter's coming to Minnesota, and the flats I wear every day to work are no longer going to cut it: my toes are starting to get cold, and the shoes look dorky when worn with socks. It's time to transition to a more appropriate shoe for the weather, and I'm stuck.

I usually wear dress slacks (like this) or dark bootcut jeans to work, so I'm looking for footwear that I can wear with both trousers and jeans. Ideally, I'd like a shoe or boot with little or no heel, as my pants are hemmed for flats.

So, what sort of footwear do you fashionable ladies wear during the wintertime? Do I go for a boot? Most women's boots I see seem to be high-heeled or appear to be designed to go over skinny jeans or tights, not under dress slacks. Should I be looking into boot alternatives? Perhaps a fashionable loafer that can be worn with socks? I'm lost.

Suggestions welcome! And thank you.
posted by sciapod to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (11 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, look! This is the topic of today's FPP on youlookfab. I struggle with this, too. I'm not normally a big loafer person so I just wear heeled boots and my longer hemmed stuff all fall and winter, then flats and short hemmed stuff in spring and summer. I might try a loafer this year.
posted by peep at 11:35 AM on October 20, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'd go for flat boots -- you might try looking for a riding boot style.
posted by pised at 11:45 AM on October 20, 2009

From September to May, I usually end up dressing exactly like Jessica Biel here. If that look's too casual (or if your jeans won't fit into boots), you can't go wrong with a simple knee-length skirt, thick black tights, and dark boots (flat or heeled).
posted by oinopaponton at 11:56 AM on October 20, 2009

I wear mary janes, I wear them with skirts and pants. I do not know or want to know if they look dorky with socks.
posted by Gor-ella at 11:59 AM on October 20, 2009

PS apparently oxfords are now cool for ladies
posted by Gor-ella at 12:00 PM on October 20, 2009

Stylish boots. Black and brown.
posted by bunny hugger at 12:04 PM on October 20, 2009

I wear flat, tall boots all winter in Colorado. Riding and motorcycle boots can hide under pants (after all, that's what bootcut means!) but look clean when exposed with a skirt or over skinny jeans - these boots, though they were the most expensive shoes I've ever bought, are incredibly versatile, comfortable, and warm. Flat lug soles can work fine with dressier clothes, as long as the shape of the toebox is neat enough.

Oxfords and broughams are cool, too, but make sure they don't look too clunky with wide pant legs.
posted by peachfuzz at 12:14 PM on October 20, 2009

I just bought these boots to solve that very problem. They work under pants (as I wore them yesterday), with a skirt (as I'm wearing today), and over jeans (as I wore them last weekend). The heel looks smarter than a flat, I think, but it's so low as to feel non-existent, and I have no problem wearing them with my hemmed-for-flats pants.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 12:53 PM on October 20, 2009

There are tons of work-appropriate flat boots out this year, in both tall and ankle cuts.

If you're used to flats, ankle boots might be a more comfortable transition, rather than having your shoes go halfway up your leg.

Also, like peanut_mcgillicuty alluded, you can get away with a bit of a heel on a boot, because most boots will go high enough under your slacks to hide your socks, so your pants won't look too short.
posted by Sprout the Vulgarian at 1:06 PM on October 20, 2009

Don't forget to buy yourself some trouser socks too. I've worn them for years and I find them to be very warm. They come in a lot of colors and look very sleek with loafers, boots, ankle boots, oxfords, etc.

If it's very cold, you could wear two pairs or a pair over a pair of tights under your slacks. I do this all the time in the winter and it's cozy but dressy.
posted by aabbbiee at 1:25 PM on October 20, 2009

I don't love loafers per se, but I wear buckle-shoes, Mary Janes, or lace-up shoes that are the same sort of idea.

(Styles linked are similar to stuff in my closet. I like a couple inches of solid, unfussy heel, but there are lower-heeled versions of similar shoes.)
posted by desuetude at 3:30 PM on October 20, 2009

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