Every autumn, as the weather turns chilly and Starbucks starts vending pumpkin spice lattes, I swap my summer sandals for a perfectly broken-in pair of brown leather loafers — and inevitably catch some good-natured digs about my “grandpa shoes.”
Even I have to admit my trusty flats are a little bit librarian chic. But back in the 1990s, when Steve Madden shoes topped every cool teen’s holiday wishlist, chunky loafers were anything but staid. With their square toes and sturdy heels, the leather stompers lent even school uniforms a punk-rock lilt.
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And now thick-soled loafers are making a comeback. Joining other ’90s trends in the 21st century, the shoes are all over Instagram feeds and street style shots. Influencers and celebs like Selena Gomez wear them with denim (try kick flares or mom jeans) or a skirt and ankle socks.
If you want to kick off fall in this nostalgic style, read on — we scoured the Internet for the best chunky loafers.
Hefty loafers, meet high fashion. I love the scalloped edge on the sole of these Prada shoes.
Want to try the trend without handing over too much cheddar? Nab these chunky, already-affordable loafers while they’re on sale.
The Steve Madden originals — with a candy-colored twist. I’d pair these alongside a white smock dress and let the baby pink leather steal the show.
Ch-ch-ch-chainlinks. The silver metal adornments freshen up these loafers’ super ’90s stitching.
Who said heavy duty loafers can’t be ladylike? Designed with a slingback and embellished with little crystal flowers, these chunky loafers beg to be worn with cigarette pants and a puff-sleeved blouse.
I’m delighted by the way these transform traditionally buttoned-up trends (penny loafers and pearls) into something so rock and roll.
I love these loafers as a perfect middle ground between the chunky trend and my usual preppier flats: the horsebit detail keeps it classic, while the lug sole adds an edge.
Height seekers, these chunky loafers are for you. The best thing about those big platform soles? Even four inch heels stay pretty darn comfy.
How do you plan on styling your chunky loafers? What footwear trend should we cover next? Share with us in the comments!
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