Though it is finally April, temperatures in New York City have been infuriatingly stubborn—hovering only in the 50s at best, when you are longing for the stray superhot day to pop through and slap you in the kisser. Still, if an overwhelming desire to don a flimsy floral frock seems agonizingly premature, you can at least acknowledge your anticipation from your ankles down with flowered footwear at delightfully attractive prices.
At a company called Charlotte Russe (not named for the latest Moscow blogger—this is a whipped-cream dessert), there are botanical platforms so imposing they will immediately divert strangers’ eyes from your dull black leftover-from-winter dress for a mere $38.50. Likewise, a similar pair of teetery spikes from Steve Madden, with a platform high enough to daunt fanatical Gene Simmons re-creators, is $149.
If you are one of the 99 out of 100 people who can barely stand up in the above, let alone walk, ballet flats with flappy plastic petal decorations have a distinctive 1960s vibe that would suit Peggy, Megan, or even Betty (but not Joan, who is more a Charlotte Russe kind of girl).
Wear these in celebration of the final season of Mad Men, launching next Sunday. Or slide, literally, into a more sportif version of a ballet slipper—Sperry Top-Sider offers their boat shoe in a deep pink Liberty of London millefleur archival print with pale grosgrain ties for $60.
For people in a good mood no matter what, Birkenstock has ridiculously cheerful daisy-splashed clogs in a blinding shade of yellow that also evoke the goofiness of the 1960s, but in retrospect should perhaps be approached cautiously by the over-25 set. (Maybe leave these for Sally Draper—now fifteen years old—and her high school friends.) For readers who can tolerate the torture of the rubber rain boot, which to me has always represented the footwear equivalent of the Native American sweat lodge, dubious delights in this vein include Bogs Sweet Pea Boot, which has posies on its feet and a black shank, giving the whole effort an equestrian air for $119.99.
Lastly, Toms, whose charitable take on the canvas espadrille has become a new summer classic, suggests, among many examples, a $54 pair that boasts curlicued buds and leaves. Bonus: If you are stranded on a desert island and forced to consume these, Charlie Chaplin–style, you won’t have to compromise any lingering principals—they are vegan.