Monday, June 11, 2012

Summer Work Staples: The Peep-toe

Continuing the summer style series, today we explore the peep-toe. Whether you like it in pump, wedge or flat form, we all enjoy a little extra air down there in the summer. I'm a fan—I have basic peep-toe pumps in brown croc, black leather and nude patent to keep me covered.

Uber-conservative offices are generally closed-toe year-round, but if you have a more relaxed dress code and can toss in a little toe here or there, here are some things to consider when shopping for and styling peep-toe pumps for the office.
  • Peep a little, peep a lot. Even among peep-toes, there is a lot of variation, from a tiny cut-out vee to an entire exposed toe-area. Try a few styles on to see what you're most comfortable with. The more conservative your office is, the smaller your peeping area should be.
  • Coverage. Keep the rest of the shoe more conservative in coverage. I recommend saving the peep-toe d'orsays or slingbacks for events rather than office wear. Peep-toes in open lace (unlined), crochet, or other open fabrics are also not for the office.
  • Color. I'm a big fan of working color into your work wardrobe, and shoes are no exception. Keep the look balanced by pulling a single color from the rest of your outfit into your shoes, or by accenting an otherwise neutral outfit with a pop. Leave the ultra bright neons at home unless you're in a very creative environment.
  • Embellishments. Add a little pizzazz to an office shoe through texture or try something with a little embellishment (buckles, bows or cut-outs are pretty easy to find). A mary jane, t-strap or ankle strap are also fun spins on a classic peep-toe pump.
  • Perfect the pedi. A messy or unkept pedicure can make even the chicest peep-toe look bad. There's not need to go out and spend money on regular pedicures (unless you're into that kind of thing), just make sure your nails are clean and clipped. If you do go with a color, make sure it is office appropriate—you have a little more leeway on your toes than your fingers, especially in summer, but don't go totally crazy.
  • Wear with...anything. Peep-toes are pretty versatile in the office. They look chic with a knee-length dress (any shorter and it can look like too much skin) or with a pair of floor-skimming pants (or some skinnies on Casual Friday). 
Some fun office-appropriate peep-toe styles:

Are peep-toes part of your summer shoe collection? How do you keep them office appropriate?


  1. I would highly recommend a basic peep-toe in your shoe wardrobe. I love, love, love my black, patent, peep-toe wedges that I bought at Target a few years back. They go with everything and can be dressed up or down. In fact, I love them so much that I wore out the soles. I searched everywhere for a comfortable and stylish replacement, but couldn't find any so... I got my cheap Target shoes resoled.

    1. Love it! I usually find my shoes on super-sale, and can safely say that over the years, I tend to spend more on maintaining some of my shoes than what I originally paid for them. :)

  2. Just wrote a post on professional outfits and I had to tag you in my post for your great advice on peep-toe heels in the corporate workplace. Thanks!

    <3 AQT

  3. I only realized I had peep-toe shoes I never wore this season after I was done working. I liked them too :( Now to get a job so I can wear them again.

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