The apartments are cute, actually

The apartments are cute, actually

Chanel SS22. Photography via Imaxtree

I love my feet the same way I love my emotions: grounded.

Podiatrists warn against them. vogue lovelessly called them “grandmother’s shoes”. Their mere existence is enough to justify dissertations on the Internet. All things considered, it would seem that nothing good can come from wearing apartments. But that hasn’t stopped fashion from bringing them back.

On the runway, designers have been signaling the return of the controversial shoe for some time, with brands like Miu Miu, Chanel and Simone Rocha putting their own spin on the classic design. Recent street style snaps show celebrities like Lindsay Lohan and Jennifer Lopez advocating for no-frills shoes, while stars Alexa Chung and Zoë Kravtiz have long had a fondness for ballerina flats.

For a number of seasons, fashion favored thicker soles, leading to flats being, as far as “trends” go, sartorially outlawed. Still, the age-old shoe has outgrown its modern-day detractors and is back in fashion’s good graces. But public opinion remains largely divided, which should come as no surprise.

The dance slipper has been around for centuries as a staple of dancer’s uniforms. In the 90s and early 90s, the shoe achieved fashion statement status thanks to trend setters like Kate Moss, who associated them with her everyday outfits. Since then, the minimalist shoe design has fallen in popularity. And it’s not hard to see why.

Unlike sneakers or heels, flats don’t do much to accentuate body features. Due to their shapelessness, they can make legs look shorter and feet look wider (ideal!). Not to mention, the very saying of the shoe most likely creates dreaded “toe splitting” visuals. And when it comes to structural support, there is none. Their deflated soles and tendency to clench your toes like a bundle of sardines are, ultimately, not so good for your feet. But, as I’m sure all ballerinas say, it’s showbiz baby.

Despite their design flaws, ballet flats have returned to the fashion map thanks to a mix of aesthetic subgenres that are currently thriving on TikTok. They’re the obvious shoe choice in the balletcore trend and a staple of the Tumblr-era cute Twee style. Ballerinas also capture the delicate Parisian fashion of the viral French girl aesthetic.

While they represented a sleek, modern style in the 2000s, they inspire nostalgia today – whether it’s dance classes, school librarians, or your grandma’s shoe closet. Of course, with each new trend revival, old styles are updated. In the case of flats, designers are introducing contemporary tweaks like chunky soles, grungy buckles, and built-in anklets. Among these modernizations, however, the simple back-to-basics apartment has also regained its cult fashion.

As the world opens up, the lightweight shoe has become the go-to choice for commuters. Whether it’s trips to the office, school or (well-deserved) evenings spent partying, apartments are a portable option for hitting the road in a hurry. And with their hands-free application, they’re the epitome of easy-to-access footwear. Subjective blandness aside, their soft design means they work with almost any outfit. As such, the appeal of these librarian shoes becomes quite clear.

With very little padding between your foot and the ground, the flats offer an air of refined sensibility and functionality. They’re an apparent antithesis to chunky shoe trends of the day, such as Crocs and Versace platform pumps. While ultra-high soles are made for imaginative dressers, the classic ballerina presents a humble alternative. Are they the most revolutionary shoes ever invented? Not by far. But do they really have be? In an age of maximalist shoes, it’s refreshing to see a shoe that knows exactly what it is: not much at all.



#apartments #cute