The Ultimate Guide to Mary Jane Shoes

Once the footwear of choice for royalty, Mary Jane shoes have expanded to grace the foot of modern women. Commonly thought of as a child’s shoe style that’s low-cut shoe that has one or more straps across the instep, Mary Janes offers chunky heels, pointy stilettos, and even an open toe designed for adults. If you’re wondering how to make the classic shoes work for you, keep on reading to scoop our tricks.

Pick the shoe material that’s durable and flattering.

chiffon white romper with chic bag and mary jane flats

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Originally, Mary Jane shoes were typically made of black leather or patent leather and have one thin strap fastened with a buckle or button and the classic look is with a pair of pantyhose or socks worn with a dress or a skirt and blouse. They also have a broad and rounded toe box, low heels, and thin outsoles and the buckle or button appeared on these shoes for the first time in the early 19th century. Nowadays, most Mary Jane shoes are made out of patent leather, as well as many different materials like including suede, canvas, mesh, and such while some have a rubberized sole and canvas stitching that made the shoes more versatile and durable.

Opt for a style that suits your personality and lifestyle.

navy top with white pants and red mary jane shoes modern outfit with mary jane shoes fringe skirt with sweater and mary jane shoes all white outfit with statement bag and mary jane shoes red mary janes stiletto with striped dress and leggings

Some drastic changes are primarily designed for adults while most of children’s shoes retain the design as originally envisioned, flat black shoes with a rounded toe and a strap across the instep. Like fashion blogger Nicole Warne, you may opt for flat pair of Mary Jane shoes designed for comfort. Also, Mary Jane styles have gained popularity in office and casual situations among women looking for a comfortable and polished look. Another variation of Mary Janes uses the “T-bar” variation of straps. Like fashion blogger Mary Orton, trade your classic pumps for Mary Jane shoes with heels making it work at the office. For more casual situations, go for Mary Jane wedges that offer a more cosmopolitan look, or Athletic Mary Janes designed to be worn in more sporty situations, while Mary Jane mules are a contemporary update to the classic look.

Make a style statement with Mary Jane shoes.

statement sweater with mary jane shoes neon bangles and metallic t strap sandals with striped top and yellow pants mary jane shoes with tuxedo coat and graphic dress dress with skinny jeans and mary jane shoes

Mary Jane shoes are most often thought of with the classic style of the shoe. However, the style evolves for where street style stars and fashion bloggers wear them to make a bold statement. Subcultures who favored quirkier and punk styles were those following punk rock, psychobilly, and gothic. Also, you may go for bold colored Mary Jane shoes with embellishments to complement your eccentric outfits like fashion bloggers always do. Whether you’re aiming for a preppy style, casual style, modern classic style, or punk style, there’s a pair of Mary Jane shoes perfect for you.

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