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10 High-Fashion Takes on the Mary Jane

by Tori López

Collage by Maridelis Morales Rosado for W Magazine.

I used to roll my eyes at Carrie Bradshaw. I mean, how ridiculous to have so much adoration for mundane pairs of shoes? How many Manolos can one person possibly buy? Well, something in me has shifted, because I now have a shoe obsession of my own. While most days you’ll find me walking to and from the W office in sneakers, the style I’ve been really gravitating towards lately is the beloved Mary Jane. It’s timeless, it’s classic, but the shape is always evolving—from prim French schoolgirl styles by Thom Browne and Carel to chunky, punk-inspired versions by Burberry or the Portuguese designer Nicole Saldaña. (And of course, there’s a Carrie-appropriate Manolo Blahnik pair in buttery yellow satin with a bejeweled button.) As parties begin to pop back up on the calendar, I’ve been strapping on a patent leather platform pair by Nodaleto—they’re just the right thing for hours on the dance floor. If you wanted to, you could create an entire shoe wardrobe just out of Mary Janes, with a different pair for every occasion, from a low-key day in the park to a black tie wedding. Here, ten of my absolute favorites. (And, Carrie? Forgive me, I finally understand you.)