In Honor Of 2013′s Most Polarizing Trend

sneaker_wedges_targetAnother year, another litany of trends. 2013 saw everything from crop tops to entirely too many Celine bags, but nothing was quite as trendy as a certain shoe that stepped into town this year.

Here’s the thing about trends: They aren’t supposed to appeal to everyone and they’re certainly not built to last. The best trends are outlandish, the exact opposite of classic, universally flattering pieces (think not-too-fitted white button-downs.) I’d even go so far as to say that the best trends are….kind of ugly.

Wedge sneakers fit this definition perfectly, probably better than any other 2013 trend. When I first saw a pair of ‘snedges,’ my initial thought was “why would anyone ever wear those?” I’m not a fan of sneakers at all. I think they’re shoes that should be used but not seen, reserved only for gym sessions (there are exceptions – like these insane Miu Miu sparklers.) The idea of adding even more bulk to a pair of sneakers just seemed a little ridiculous to me.

But somewhere between seeing Rihanna rock the eff out of her snedges and watching the infamous Isabel Marant version take over, I had a complete change of heart and suddenly I just needed a pair. I wasn’t willing to shell out for the aforementioned Marants ($695 for shoes that don’t have stiletto heels? No.) and even the more reasonable version by Ash seemed steep, so I scoured lower-priced retailers until I found a pretty fantastic, insanely affordable pair of my own. The good news? They’re still available and even cheaper than ever.

I had the privilege of interviewing Brooke Jaffe, Fashion Director at Bloomingdales, a few months ago. She cited an overarching trend in footwear – the incorporation of sporty elements – as 2013′s biggest shoe trend. She also gave some excellent advice for anyone who wants to jump on the wedge sneaker bandwagon but isn’t quite sure how to do it: She suggested thinking of a black sneaker wedge the way you would a pair of black booties. Style it exactly the way you would your favorite moto boot and you’re good. The pair I bought really works well for this purpose…and it also happens to be a dead ringer for that pricey Marant shoe. Believe it or not, these shoes are from Target.

I can’t say whether or not this divisive trend will live on into 2014, but I don’t regret buying these at all. I wear them often – they’re great to slip on when running errands and I think they’d be the perfect footwear for a game day or Superbowl party (more on that to come soon.) The shoes are on sale now for under $18, which kind of makes this a no-brainer. They’re insanely cheap but they don’t look or feel it at all. They’re surprisingly well constructed and super comfy…and they give shorties like me a little height boost!

Image via Target.

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