Last Spring (SS 2013)  Céline Shocked the fashion world with fur covered flat Birkenstock inspired footwear. The fashion press in general wrote glowing reports about these impractical summer shoes. Can you imagine how uncomfortable fur would feel rubbing up against your beautifully pedicured feet on a humid, 39 degree Celsius, August afternoon – while dashing to catch the grimy subway?

Prada also moved forward with the Birkenstock inspired footwear aesthetic for SS 2014 and prominently featured them on the on their runway: 

Analysis of the Birkenstock Inspired Footwear Aesthetic:

This is a look that is easy in some ways and hard in others to both sell (if you are a fashion retailer) and wear (if you are a fashion consumer).

First, lets look at the metrics. The average woman in North America is roughly five-foot-four inches tall and 163 pounds Ask nearly any lady on the street if she would like to appear longer, and leaner, and the answer is yes! This is why pointy stiletto high-heels are timeless. They do an excellent job of lengthening the female form. This is also why flat, Birkenstock inspired footwear –  is such a tough sell.

However, for an adventurous few fashion forward women, the flat Birkenstock inspired footwear aesthetic has some key selling points. First, minus fur embellishment, flat footwear is comfortable, and practical which is a huge bonus is you live in an urban setting and rely on public transportation. I recommend that if you are intent on trying out this look to visually balance it by pairing the flats with a miniskirt. Shorts will appear to be too casual unless they are clearly luxe and dressed up.

Below:  I have included images and links to some more affordable versions of this aesthetic. Do not be worried if the pricey Marni and Prada versions are out of your budget. The less costly versions below make sense from a strategic fashion vantage point. These wallet friendly versions allow you to experiment with the look while not committing that much money to an aesthetic that I consider to be a fad lacking in longevity.

This Shoe Retails for $64.00 USD: Image Source Jeffrey Campbell Noe


Adidas Originals X Opening Ceremony – Image Source: Retailing for slightly over $200.00 USD



Image Source: 1945 X Resort Platform by Feminine and Masculine which retails for roughly $399.95 USD