mary jane shoes

How to Style Mary Jane Shoes

Mary Jane shoes are classic, loved for their traditional style they are the ultimate footwear choice that will form the base for many an outfit. Once worn by children, Mary Janes found their start as flat shoes, but these days you can find them with various types of heels to suit a range of different occasions from smart to casual, like Mary Jane heels, wedges, and flats, plus sporty Mary Jane trainers too!

As there are so many variants of Mary Jane shoes available, they are the perfect shoes that can be worn with just about anything. So, whether you’re looking to go smart or for a more laid-back option, Mary Jane shoes make a versatile and reliable choice to wear for every causal or smart occasion, season after season.

When it comes to footwear, we’ll never say no to a new pair of shoes especially if they are comfortable too, and where Mary Jane shoes are concerned, they are a trusted favourite for comfort and style because their easy-to-fasten straps promise a secure and adjustable fit.

Before we uncover the best ways to wear Mary Janes this season, let’s take a look at the story behind the shoes and how they have grown to become a favourite footwear style over the last century …

What are Mary Jane Shoes?

Mary Janes are a distinct style of shoe characterized by their rounded toes and iconic strap that fastens across the instep. Their origin traces back to the early 20th century, gaining their name from a character in the popular Buster Brown comic strip, published in 1902. The character Mary Jane was often depicted wearing these signature shoes, leading them to become a household name.

In the ensuing years, Mary Janes grew in popularity, not just among children, for whom they were initially intended, but expanding their appeal to women of all ages. The shoes are renowned for their comfort, versatility, and timeless aesthetic. Traditionally crafted with a low heel and made of leather, they have, over the years, evolved into various styles, incorporating different materials and designs.

They've become a staple in women’s footwear, offering a mix of elegance and practicality. The quintessential strap, not only adds to their aesthetic appeal but also ensures a secure fit, making them a popular choice for various occasions - from formal events to casual outings.

Today, Mary Janes continue to be celebrated for their classic design and are regarded as a piece of fashion history, transcending generations and remaining ever-popular in the world of contemporary footwear.

What do Mary Jane Shoes look like?

Mary Jane shoes are a classic in the world of footwear, instantly recognizable by their distinct features. They boast a closed, rounded toe, giving them a timeless and elegant appearance. The signature element of Mary Janes is the broad strap that extends across the instep and fastens, typically with a buckle or button, securing the foot with grace and ease.

Traditionally, they have a low heel, although variations over the years have seen Mary Janes adapted with both flat soles and higher heels. Their clean, simple lines and minimalistic design lend them a versatile aesthetic, making them suitable for a plethora of occasions, from formal to casual. Often crafted from leather, patent leather, or suede, Mary Janes emanate a charm that’s both vintage and eternally stylish.

Are Mary Janes in Style?

While Mary Jane shoes may bring back memories of your school days, there’s plenty to be said for their classic look, because they’re the kind of shoe that will never go out of fashion.

If we look back over the decades, it’s clear to see that Mary Jane shoes have constantly been updated and reinvented to suit the styles of the moment. So, you can be sure that Mary Jane shoes will not only pair perfectly with the outfits that you already own, but they’ll give a modern (and comfortable) update that your wardrobe is craving, regardless of whether you’re dressing for smart or laid-back occasions.

Take Black Mary Jane Shoes - they epitomize timeless elegance, blending the classic charm of yesteryears with contemporary allure. The rich black hue accentuates the iconic design, offering versatility that transcends seasons and trends. Whether paired with casual attire or formal ensembles, black Mary Janes stand as a testament to enduring style, proving that some fashion staples are indeed, eternal.

How to Style Mary Janes with Trousers

When pairing Mary Janes with trousers, consider the silhouette and fabric of your pants to achieve a harmonious look. For a sophisticated touch, try teaming your Mary Janes with tailored trousers; the sleek lines of the pants complemented by the classic elegance of the shoes create a balanced ensemble.

Ankle-grazing trousers are a fantastic choice, allowing your Mary Janes to take the spotlight. Fabric-wise, consider opting for materials with a slight stretch for comfort or classic wool blends for a polished look. And let's not forget about denim! A pair of well-fitted jeans matched with Mary Janes can transform a casual outfit into a stylish statement, blending comfort and chic effortlessly.

Smarten Up

For a smart look, a pair of slim-fitting trousers pair well with traditional leather Mary Janes, opt for classic colours like black or navy to give that smart sign off, finish the look with a buttoned-down shirt, and throw on a jacket or blazer in the colder months.

A pair of flat Mary Janes are the perfect option for all-day comfort, look for a pair with cushioned leather insoles and extra flexible soles as this will keep you on your feet for longer.

Laid-Back Style

A pair of jeans are the ultimate outfit builder because they make a great foundation. For more casual days like weekends, wear blue denim with a striped Bretton t-shirt and a brightly coloured pair of Mary Janes. Go for white trainer soles to give your outfit a modern and sporty-inspired twist. If your jeans are a touch too long, fold them up for a stylish turn-up.

This effortlessly chic look, blending the casual elegance of jeans with the classic charm of Mary Janes, offers a playful yet polished aesthetic.

How to Style Mary Janes with Dresses

Mary Janes and dresses – it’s a pairing as timeless as it is charming! For a classic, feminine look, pair your Mary Janes with A-line or skater dresses. The elegant design of the shoes harmonizes beautifully with the soft lines of these dress styles. If you're venturing into an evening affair, try matching them with a cocktail dress – the iconic strap adds a touch of grace that elevates your overall attire.

For a casual yet polished daytime outfit, slip into your Mary Janes with a midi dress. The length complements the shoe’s design, offering a visual appeal that’s both modest and trendy. Patterned or solid, casual or formal, the versatility of Mary Janes makes them a delightful companion to a myriad of dress styles.

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