When you think about iconic styles in footwear (when I say ‘iconic’ I mean shoes that were worn for decades), I bet the first name that comes to mind are Mary Janes. Though they weren’t that versatile years ago, nowadays, you can find a vast variety of this kind of footwear, which is why they’re still as popular as ever, especially womens Mary Janes.
Their improved aesthetics, thanks to technology and innovation, isn’t the only thing to love about them. They also use quality materials, like leather and Lytech, and have features such as anatomic footbed with a double arch support system for even weight distribution.
You might have originally fallen for their looks, but learning their history will make you love them even more. Back in the beginning of the 20th century, specifically 1902, a comic strip named Buster Brown was created by the newspaper cartoonist Richard F. Outcault.
Mary Jane was the sister of Buster, named after the daughter of the cartoonist. And since she was the sweetheart of the comic strip, always seen wearing the same bar shoes we’ve come to love, the shoes were named in her honour. Not long after, everyone wanted to wear them, not only girls and boys but adults too. They particularly became popular from the 20s onward.
Since then, many celebrities have been seen wearing them, from Shirley Temple to Courtney Love. Nowadays, womens Mary Janes can be found in various shops worldwide, even in the collections of famous brands like Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Marc Jacobs, Jimmi Choo, Manolo Blahnik, and Comme des Garçons. All of them leaving their signature on the style with changes in the straps, heels, as well as the toe and bottom. And yes, there are clog-style Mary Janes too!
Mary Janes for Every Woman
Even if you don’t particularly like them, you’d be surprised by the extensive range you’ll come across at most specialised online stores. Sure, there are different patterns and a variety of colours to be found, but the fact that they are also orthotic means there’s much more to them than meets the eye.
Depending on your feet, whether they’re wide, as well as whether you have issues like foot and knee pain, there is a model to fit your needs. You can get a model with a premium removable footbed, choose from a variety of easy-to-clean materials and features, such as waterproofness, increased breathability, a heeled model, etc.
Additionally, make sure you choose a model that flatters your feet. Stay away from straps that are too close to the ankle and make your feet look fat. A good suggestion is to buy womens Mary Janes with narrow straps for the best look, and if you don’t want heels – to add some sexiness to your look, at least choose a model with a pointy toe.
What to Wear With Women’s Mary Jane Shoes
When shopping for ladies Mary Jane shoes, keep in mind your current wardrobe and what you can pair them with. Also, are you after a more lady-like appeal or a more nostalgic and retro one? Knowing the answer to this question will help you choose a model that suits your style easier.
What’s great about them is they can be worn with both formal and casual outfits – you just have to know how to pair them up with pants, skirts and dresses. Flat Mary Jane shoes, for example, are ideal for everyday wear when you’re running errands. They go perfectly well with skinny jeans, but if you’re looking for more sporty ones, give double angled strap models a try.
For the casual and casual smart looks, the classy wedge with no strap is a great option. For more formal outings, however, your best bet is choosing a pair like the Uncommon Mary Jane, as the heel makes them much more classy and sophisticated. When pairing them with skirts, stay away from the particularly short models and go for pencil skirts instead. When wearing Mary Janes with dresses, casual knit dresses are the ideal match.
Go ahead and tap into this trend to see with how many outfits you can pair these lovely shoe models with!