The New Ballet Flat You Can Wear From Work to Play

The ballet flat is a perennially chic favorite of many stylesetters, but lately, we’ve spied celebs like Jessica Alba, Emmy Rossum, and Rihanna wearing versions of the shoe upgraded with one simple yet significant detail: a delicate ankle strap. What does this new element add to the everyday flat? It elevates the piece entirely, giving it more poise so you can wear it from work to cocktails.

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  • Click through our slideshow to see how several tastemakers have been wearing this ladylike accessory while out and about. Plus don’t forget to shop our favorites, ranging from elegant, pointy-toe flats to more playful, round-toe renditions.

  • Jessica Alba
    Photo credit: Splash News

    Jessica Alba

    While arriving at the Los Angeles Airport last month, Alba’s Sigerson Morrison Holli2 Flats ($280) offered a ladylike counterpoint to her tough-girl essentials, like a Simone leather jacket and Salvatore Ferragamo purse.

  • Thanks to a bold animal print and metallic cap-toe, Mia’s Ashley Flats ($59) in Leopard are surefire stunners, so allow them to pop against a minimalistic outfit in muted hues.

  • Christian Louboutin’s Mrs. H Flats ($645) are as covetable as the label’s noteworthy high heels. These brightly colored beauties would look ultra-girly with a circle skirt and ruffled blouse.

  • Emmy Rossum
    Photo credit: Fame Flynet

    Emmy Rossum

    Color-block Aldo flats complement Rossum’s sweetly feminine look, which consists of Style Stalker’s Moon Base Sweater ($149) in Vivid Pink and Milly’s Siena Dress ($182), perfect for a relaxed stroll in Beverly Hills.

  • Chloé’s Adelin Metallic Leather Sling-Back Ballerinas ($628) are versatile enough to wear with anything from skinny jeans to a shift dress and their gold sheen will add instant glamour to an outfit.

  • Maison Martin Margiela’s Line 22 Ankle-Strap Flats ($470) are a classic choice. Team them with floral chino shorts and a slouchy t-shirt for a stylish weekend ensemble.

  • Alexa Chung
    Photo credit: Getty Images

    Alexa Chung

    At Chanel’s Artists Dinner at the Tribeca Film Festival, Chung wore the label from head-to-toe, combining a refined tweed dress from the S/S 13 collection with a quilted bag and cap-toe shoes. The result is incredibly sophisticated, but still youthful.

  • Add a little texture to a streamlined look, such as a crisp white button-down and jeans, with Sigerson Morrison’s snake-embossed Pointed Toe Mary Jane Flats ($395).

  • Leave it to Alexander Wang to design ankle-strap flats with a touch of edge. His luxe Elsa Ankle Cuff Flats ($525) are the perfect accompaniment to a sharp blazer and tailored shorts.

  • Elena Perminova
    Photo credit: Vanessa Jackman

    Elena Perminova

    The model’s outfit, which includes Ann Demeulemeester’s Blazer ($680) and Sophie Hulme’s structured Large Tote Bag ($910), is unquestionably fashion-forward, but ankle-strap flats keep her look grounded.

  • Pixie Market’s Pointy Ankle Straps ($68) are a step up from your basic black flats. Style them with a silky shell and tailored, cropped trousers for an office-appropriate look.

  • Delia’s studded Madison Ankle Strap Flats ($25) in Black give your look a little rock ‘n’ roll flair. Wear them as an alternative to heels for a night out on the town.

  • Selma Blair
    Photo credit: INF

    Selma Blair

    For a casual lunch date in Los Angeles earlier this year, Blair livened up her striped Vineyard Vines Portside Dress ($138) and Hermes bag with colorful Zara flats.

  • To add a dose of eclectic charm to your outfit, we suggest Pierre Hardy’s polka-dot Ballet Flats ($438) with your favorite cutoffs and graphic t-shirt.

  • We love see-through accessories, which is why Deena & Ozzy’s Clear Panel Pointy-Toe Skimmers ($34) immediately caught our eye. Step into these futuristic shoes with a neon dress to make a sartorial statement.

  • Rihanna
    Photo credit: Splash News


    Two-tone Chanel flats instantly elevate the singer’s Ray-Ban Classic Wayfarer Sunglasses ($150), Karl Lagerfeld t-shirt, and laid-back denim shorts.

  • Play up the feminine palette and shape of Dolce Vita’s Gav Ankle Strap Flats ($149) by teaming them with a pleated skirt and lightweight knit.

  • Tap into the season’s graphic trend with Jeffrey Campbell’s Monochrome Lovins Flats ($119). If you’re extra bold, slip these on with a striped dress for an eye-catching effect.

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