There is an air of the dramatic when putting on knee-high heeled boots. Maybe this stems from popular cinema, when the main character, a sassy femme fatale, zips up those long black high-heel boots before doing something which is both questionable and admirable at the same time. Years of conditioning have taught us that you put a pair of high-heeled boots on when you need to be confidently feminine. A sentiment that, although it still holds validity (you just try to look anything other than sexy in a pair of Francesco Russo heeled boots), we now also have the option to look contemporary and creative within the boots-with-heels section. For instance, J.W.Anderson, master of manipulating classics, has taken black wedge boots and turned them into something sculptural and playful. Wearing these knee-high wedge boots would inevitably change the context of not just the outfit you chose to wear with them, but probably the whole atmosphere in the room.
Let's not deny the power of attraction held in high boots, it simply cannot be ignored. The one and a half million likes, on one and a half legs of Kendal Jenner, laced up to thigh-reaching heights, put high-heeled boots on staggeringly elevated levels. Jimmy Choo has always been famous for their stiletto boots. The slick gloss of leather that hugs the calf and reaches to or above the knee is drenched in fashion symbolism. Much like the pencil skirt, red lipstick and gold necklaces. It’s a classic statement that, without shifting opinions, remains the elegant choice for up-scale events, decade after decade.
How to wear them. Bohemian friends or hip new lovers?
This comes with some disagreements among those of us at mytheresa.com HQ. We still love a short delicate dress, maybe even with a print, frill or scattering of sequins, but always ending above the knee and countering the sexy with a splash of delicate pretty. Lately, the signs have pointed towards layering dresses past the line of the heeled boots ending, for example the Victorian-style, mid-length dresses that are increasing in popularity with Balenciaga’s stretch leather knee-high heel boots. Arguments can be made on the merits of wearing very tight skinny jeans underneath over-the-knee high heel boots, but we think this might be fading out for a season or two, most likely to be replaced with stockings and embellished mini-skirts.
Black wedge boots, or indeed wedge boots in general, have been dominated by Givenchy's cult pant boots, which can’t wait to wear this season with loose rib-knit dresses and high necklines, or as a complete contrast with billowing silk of vibrant colours. Marni and VETEMENTS dominate the hip youth scene, giving you countless options to work their chunky platform boots with anything from sweatpants to a tailored suit. Burberry and Chloé keep the bohemian sisters happy with high-heel boots as romantic and textured as the flowing dresses and inevitable ponchos that will be deemed perfect partners. High-heeled boots that are slashed and laced to act more like sandals are still dominating the runway and the wardrobes of the fashion elite. Admittedly, it’s a very leggy option, but we’re going bold and giving it a try. Don’t be afraid to try this style past your twenties – we have plenty of examples, Anna Dello Russo, to name just one, that pull this look off with ease.
What's the conclusion?
Very simple. High-heel boots are not going anywhere anytime soon. The shape, and what it does for the leg, is still a strong influence in the designers’ paint pot of inspiration, and very much in the hearts of us, the shoppers and wearers. Block heel boots, wedge heel boots, platform boots, and the classic heeled knee-high boots – they're all reliably present from one season to the next and are much less trend-influenced than flat shoes or stiletto pump shapes. This makes them reliable investment pieces, shoes that ignore tide changes and flitting fashion beliefs. They are as reliable as Anna Wintour’s bob – and just about as iconic.