If You Loved Winter’s Lug-Sole Boot Trend, These Sandals Are For You

I’ve been a fan of so-called “ugly chic” footwear for years. I once made it my mission to find a pair of (then rare) all-leather Arizona Birkenstocks after a furry version appeared on Celine’s spring/summer 2013 runway. I still wear my six-year-old Marni wooden flatforms that have some resemblance to Japanese geta sandals. I even purchased my first No.6 wooden clogs last fall. What I love about these clunkier, not traditionally sexy shoe styles is that they add so much personality to any spring and summer outfit, but are (usually) durable and easy to wear, too.  
 
Which is why I’m excited to see that the chunky sandal continues to be a big trend for spring/summer 2021. Sturdy-chic options walked the runways at Boss, Anna Sui, and Longchamp, and sock-ready flat sandals also made the cut at Celine, Coach 1941, and more. Combining comfort (an essential requirement in these WFH times) with extra-thick soles and bold straps, these new styles offer a look that is more substantive and youthful than the classic Teva or Birkenstock. Think of them as warm-weather sister styles to the chunky lug-sole boots we all loved this winter.    
 
This season, there are several iterations of the chunky sandal trend for all styles and wardrobes, from minimalist leather slides to sporty-futuristic flats to platform flip-flops. Many are clearly ’90s-inspired, while other styles simply offer an exaggerated take on the indoor-outdoor slippers and “house” shoes we’ve all been wearing nonstop. 
 
Personally, after seeing Chanel’s “dad” sandals looking cute all over Instagram last summer, I’m coveting a more polished leather version with some ankle support and a slight flatform sole, to add some height and heft. I prefer open-toed sandals, which can be worn with cute socks (controversial, I know!) during the transitional months, but closed-toe fisherman sandals are another trendy option this spring. Just look for a pair with wider, supportive straps and a thicker, one- to two-inch sole. 
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