Chanel’s 2011 pre-fall collection was inspired by Byzantium and its queen, Empress Theodora. The result: the character of the sumptuous bohemian, with looks heavy on golden touches, brocade, and disheveled up-dos. And flats. To my dismay, flats are here to stay. At least Chanel proves they can be worn just as decadently as heels and with just as much flair. Byzantine-chic is at full-force in these black suede sandals, trimmed in captivating golden trim. So if you’re going to do a flat, do it Chanel-style, and pair these with a flowy Grecian goddess gown, and perhaps a bejeweled headband and ornately made-up eye. Make it count because while a flat sandal might say “laid-back,” the price is anything but. At Bergdorf Goodman for $1,495.
Affordable Alternatives: Somehow a high-heel makes a high price easier to digest. Marc Jacob’s suede and metallic snake-trimmed ballerina flats suggest a similar opulent exoticism (with a sense of humor). While Vionnet’s may not have the same spiraling pizzazz as Chanel’s, their sequined-embellished black suede flats are fit for the regal bohemian. A funky, punk option? Toga’s embellished green leather-and-black patent flats, with metal ornaments and a mesh cutout heel.
Marc Jacobs Python-Trimmed Suede Ballerina Flats on Net-a-Porter for $645.
Vionnet Sequin-Embellished Suede and Satin Flat Sandals on Net-a-Porter for $650.
Toga “Pulla” Sandal at Opening Ceremony for $860.