Ballet Pumps Are Back – And Better Than Ever

Thought ballet flats peaked in 2004? Think again, friends...

Alexa Chung wearing ballet pumps

by Natalie Hammond |

In the early '00s, Sienna Miller wore hers with zero-effort outfits, such as a pair of leggings, denim vest and beret. Kate Moss, meanwhile, preferred to style them with slimline jeans and waistcoats. Either way, both women turned the ballet pump into a fashion must-have. But somewhere along the line, the shoe lost its edge, becoming synonymous instead with the off-duty wardrobes of Sloane Rangers. That was then. But now they’re back in business.

Miu Miu AW22
Miu Miu AW22 ©Getty

At Miu Miu - the label that gave us this season's blink-and-you'll-miss-it mini - silk ballet slippers were worn with scrunched knee-length socks in a sweet yet sultry take on the trend when you consider that the models were also wearing sheer tunic dresses or caged pencil skirts. On the streets, meanwhile, Jeanne Damas did an excellent job of selling them for spring, styling her clotted cream-coloured pair with white denim and a beige leather coat.

Jeanne Damas
Jeanne Damas ©Getty

Alexa Chung, a long-time fan of the ballet pump, has several pairs from Le Monde Béryl, which come in lots of different variations, including a perky sky blue wool. She's also posted about her elasticated, bow-tied pair, Loeffler Randall's Leonie, that look fresh out of a dance studio. They’re both girly and grown-up, plus the shoe's easy, functional nature feels right for a season where you'll still be wanting to wear socks most of the time.

The ballet pump has always had friends in very high places. Meghan Markle, Alexandra Ocasio Cortez, Angelina Jolie and Chloë Sevigny are all devoted followers. But forget the ballet pumps of old. A few new-season design details have fuelled the slipper’s comeback, like the scrunching on Arket's, or the directional split-toe on Maison Margiela's Tabi.

And while this new guard of ballet pumps goes with pretty much everything - blazers, leggings, dresses - the only thing to remember is to check the weather forecast before stepping out of the house.

SHOP: The Best Ballet Pumps To Buy Now


SHOP: The Best Ballet Flats To Buy Now

Arket, Scrunched Leather Ballerinas, £135
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& Other Stories, Almond Toe Suede Ballerina Flats, £75
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Essen The Label, The Foundation Flat, £149
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Russell & Bromley, Pearl Ballet Pump, £225
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Loeffler Randall, Leonie Crinkle Champagne Ballet Flats, £190
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Aeyde, Kirsten Ballet Flats, £225
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Le Monde Bu00e9ryl, Sky Blue Wool, £345
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Loewe, Derby Leather Ballet Flats, £550
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Maison Margiela, Tabi Split-Toe Leather Ballet Flats, £480
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Mango, Bow Leather Ballerina, £35.99
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LK Bennett, Trilly Black Crinkled Patent Ballet Pumps, £119
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