This season it’s all about the sandal and adding straps to your warm-weather looks in place of tired old Topsiders and flip-flops.

Sandals have always been pretty polarising, which is largely down to some gross misuse over the years – and in the wrong hands they can still look terrible – but if you follow our simple ‘five ways to wear’, below, you’ll be stepping out in style for as long as the sun continues to shine in 2015.

1. With A Suit

Summer gives rise to countless opportunities to pull on a suit, with our social calendars often packed to the brim.

Until now, you may not have given much consideration to the powerful pairing of a lightweight linen, cotton or seersucker suit with sandals. Granted, this isn’t a look for an upscale wedding or an event with a strict dress code, but slipping your lovingly pedicured loaves into a sophisticated leather pair for a smart-casual occasion could be the subtle tweak you need to stand out from the rest of the crowd.

The key is to go minimal with your accessories – wearing a tie with sandals and tailoring, for instance, looks downright ‘dad’ – and ground your outfit with a plain Oxford or poplin cotton shirt, letting your sandals make the statement.

5 Ways To Wear SandalsImage: Toast SS15

2. With Separates

The undisputed elegant alternative to flip-flops, a solid pair of two-strap Birkenstocks (or similar) sits especially well with tailored separates.

Combine with a featherweight blazer and granddad collar shirt for a refined summer look that strikes the perfect balance between slacker and stuffy.

With the breeze in your toes, try a pair of slim-fitting cropped trousers (or pinrolled chinos) to create a streamlined silhouette against which your sandals can stand out.

5 Ways To Wear SandalsImage: L.B.M. 1911 SS13

3. With Sportswear

Let’s face it, there’s nothing sporty about sandals. But just because they weren’t made with a sharp sprint off the blocks in mind, that doesn’t mean they don’t look good teamed with sports luxe pieces.

There are plenty of technical models on the market (Teva and Suicoke are masters of the ‘sports sandal’) that complement this type of aesthetic perfectly, but an all-black leather pair can look even better worn with an understated bomber jacket, slouchy tee and jersey shorts/chinos.

5 Ways To Wear SandalsImage: ALLSAINTS SS13

4. With Tailored Shorts

The grown up man’s answer to Havaianas, when it comes to wearing sandals with shorts, keeps things sophisticated with a well-tailored pair.

Wear them as part of a short suit or contrast the structured fit and cut of the shorts against a punchy Hawaiian or intricately patterned shirt (whether short- or long-sleeved).

This is a look that will take you from beach to bar without the need to head back to you hotel to change, while simultaneously marking you out as one of the best-dressed men in the resort.

5 Ways To Wear SandalsImage: MANGO MAN SS15

5. With Skinny/Slim Jeans

If the above looks are too much of a leap on from your signature style, integrate them into your existing wardrobe by wearing sandals with your slim or skinny jeans.

For this, you’ll need to select a pair of two or three strap sandals with a thicker sole to keep the vibe suitably rugged and masculine (designs with a slender sole will look a bit too ‘mum on the school run’). Then, layer a plain charcoal or white T-shirt on top for a low-key outfit that nods to the trend in a simple, laid-back way.

Accessorise with a pair of Ray-Bans for an effortlessly cool finish.

5 Ways To Wear SandalsImage: ZARA 2015

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5 Ways To Wear Sandals

5 Ways To Wear Sandals

How to pull off one of menswear’s most polarising footwear styles

Image: Zara SS14


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