Hey, Fashion Friend: Are Ballet Flats Back?


Photo illustration: The cut

In middle school I had a pair of Limited Too ballet flats. They were my favorites and as far as I remember they were brown and glittery and left a glitter trail in most places I went – a calling card of sorts. I would pair them with a pair of Bermuda shorts and an empire waist babydoll blouse. I felt like Gisele Bundchen in this outfit. Surely this was high fashion. No one was trendier or more fashionable than my 12-year-old self at that moment, and it was all thanks to my little ballet flats, which had no arch support and made my feet sweat like Kanye West wearing winter clothes in the summer.

On an inconsequential day, I put them in the back of my closet, somewhere in my graveyard of collared shirts and capris, and forgot their existence—at least until discourse started.

early 2022, Fashion asked his readers, “Are we ready for a ballerina comeback?”

Throughout the year, trend forecasters and general fashion-conscious consumers have been spotting the resurgence of the ballet flat as a “trendy” item of clothing (but, let the record show, some people have never stopped wearing them! It’s down to a sense of personal style!). In July, influencer Matilda Djerf wore a pair of black Chanel ballet shoes. TikTok users fell into a polarized frenzy. “Now that Matilda Djerf brought them back, they’re back,” said one. Another wanted to remind us slipper veterans of the sufferings we experienced wearing them: “Before you buy a pair of ballet flats, I want you to remember the feeling of a sweaty foot when your sweaty heel comes out of a ballet flat.” summer pops out.” Sarel Madzebra told her followers, “You can put any label you want on it. I don’t wear ballet flats. I’m not part of that narrative.” Other content creators who wanted to revive the trend immediately started styling her flats with leg warmers, baggy pants and straight-leg jeans.

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Here’s the thing: Just because you’ve seen Djerf in ballet flats doesn’t mean it’s the same she need to start wearing ballet flats. This is not mean girls, and Djerf is certainly not Regina George. If you don’t like those little pumps, go ahead, loathe them, hate them, snarl them when you’re window shopping if you’re called to it. However, when you see these ballet flats and think, Wow, these really suit my personal style and I could see myself wearing them long after they are considered trendywe have the summary for you.

If, like me, you fall into a third, less represented category of people who wanted to be a dancer growing up and never got the ballet lessons they always wanted, maybe now is a chance to do that cliche, your inner child to heal?

As with any cyclical trend, I recommend buying thrift and browsing what your local thrift and vintage stores have to offer. If those fall short, we’ve got some quality finds for your feet below. My main criterion for choosing them was that they were in the shape of a ballet flat and would make any outfit more chic.

Maison Margiela brown tabi ballet flats

There are fancy hooves. I’m obsessed.

Miu Miu satin ballerinas with bow

Yes, these are the diamonds of the season.

Ballerinas with a turbo-shaped platform sole

I think these speak for themselves (they tell me I can never afford them).

Everlane ballet flats

For girl bosses on the go!

Leonie black ballet flats

These are so versatile that it’s very hard to go wrong with them.

J. Crew Anya Leather Mary Jane Flats

J.Crew is experiencing a renaissance. Trust me.

wandler dash lambskin ballerinas with ruched straps

Senior fashion writer Emilia Petrarca recommended this to me and I would trust her with my life.

Mansur Gavriel square toe ballerina

I’m a sucker for a square toe and love how they’re incorporated here.

Repetto Camille ballet flats

Several Cut employees recommended these to me, and I’m pretty sure these are the ones Lily-Rose Depp famously wore.

Flat Apartment Two-layer ballet flats

Fashion Assistant Vivian Chuang loves these, and I love Vivian’s style, so, judging by the transitive property, I love them too.

Leather flat with heel

Imagine stomping around in those tiny heels. They are very similar to the Repetto heels, at a slightly friendlier price point.

Nike Air Rift Breathe

These aren’t quite ballet flats, but they say, “I’m meeting a friend for tennis, but I’ll still make it fashionable.”

Ballerinas for women

Camper is a notoriously comfortable shoe and these look the best orthopedically.

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