Audrey Hepburn loved them. Jacqueline Kennedy loathed them (too “vampy”). And Kim Kardashian is their latest high-profile fan.
We’re talking about kitten heels, of course: the chic, pointed pumps that couldn’t be more perfect for the current moment.
After all, it’s been two years of comfort dressing. Two years of hiking sandals and sneakers. Two years of tracky daks and tied-back hair and working from home. And now women are ready to return to the office, and amp up the glamour.
But only a little bit, mind you. An inch or two, max (after all, who wants to relinquish the comfort factor completely?) Which is where kitten heels come in: the perfect, low-key glamorous shoe, for 2022’s low-key return to work.
And this year’s kitten heel is no prissy pushover. The latest incarnation – the knifepoint heel – comes with an elongated pointy toe for extra don’t-mess-with-me 2022 energy.
“Kitten heels are a classic,” says stylist Lucy Wood, who compiled this edit and notes that kitten heels were popular both on and off the runway during the recent fashion month. “The pointed heel is always going to work well into your wardrobe, but the elongated toe makes a little bit more of a statement.”
If the witchy silhouette seems familiar, that’s because it was only just in fashion a minute ago, or at least in the early noughties (which is basically the same thing), and then again in 2017 with Balenciaga’s knifepoint mules. (Dior’s daintier versions, complete with grosgrain ribbon, were popular the same year, too.)
“Trends are cycling around faster than ever,” says Wood. “And Balenciaga is having a huge moment again, so we’re seeing a lot of big trends stemming from their signature house codes.”
Best with longer hemlines and pantsuits, you can wear them flat, as heels or boots. Here’s Lucy’s edit…
Photography by Sarah Adamson