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Shopping Clare Louise  

What shoes were popular in the 2000s

The 2000s were a time of bold experimentation in the world of fashion. As we moved away from the grunge and minimalism of the 90s, the new millennium brought with it a wave of refreshing shoe trends that have left a lasting impact on the fashion world. Whether it was the “Sex and the City”-inspired love for Manolo Blahnik, the sweeping wave of hip-hop culture influencing high top sneakers, or the rise of fast fashion labels like Steve Madden, the 2000s were a decade that left its mark in footwear news. From cargo pants and low rise jeans to flip flops and ballet flats, let’s take a walk down memory lane and revisit the top shoe styles that were popular in the early 2000s.

Manolo Blahnik and ‘Sex and the City’

Few TV shows have had as much influence on fashion as HBO’s ‘Sex and the City’. The series, which ran from 1998 to 2004, not only influenced the way women dressed but also what they chose to wear on their feet. Manolo Blahnik, a Spanish high-end shoe designer, emerged as an iconic label after the character Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, frequently wore his heels on the show. Blahnik’s shoes, especially his iconic black high-heeled sandals, were a symbol of luxury and fashion-forwardness in the 2000s.

Sarah Jessica Parker’s character made Manolo Blahnik’s shoes so desirable that women everywhere were clamoring to get their hands (or rather, feet) on them—even at high-end price points. This trend not only boosted Blahnik’s image but also set a trend for designer shoes being seen as a necessary luxury in women’s fashion.

Steve Madden and the Rise of Fast Fashion

While high-end designers like Manolo Blahnik were gaining popularity, the 2000s also witnessed the rise of fast fashion brands like Steve Madden. Known for their trendy, affordable footwear, Steve Madden shoes became a wardrobe staple for fashion-conscious women across the world.

This was the decade where fashion became democratized – good style was no longer limited to those who could afford designer labels. The affordable prices of Steve Madden shoes, along with their trendy designs, appealed to the young, fashion-conscious consumer who cared about keeping up with the latest shoe trends without breaking the bank. It was no longer about where the shoes were from, but about how they looked and what they conveyed about the wearer’s style.

High Top Sneakers and the Influence of Hip Hop

At the same time, the influence of hip hop on mainstream fashion was undeniable in the 2000s. High top sneakers, often paired with baggy jeans or cargo pants, became a staple in many wardrobes. Brands like Nike and Adidas were leading the charge, but even high-end designers were getting in on the trend.

Fashion in the 2000s was marked by a blurring of the lines between high fashion and streetwear. High top sneakers, once relegated to basketball courts and skate parks, became an acceptable form of casual footwear for both men and women, further solidifying the influence of hip hop culture on the fashion world.

Ballet Flats and the Return to Classics

Amidst the high heels and chunky sneakers, there was a return to classic, elegant footwear in the form of ballet flats. Inspired by the footwear of ballet dancers, these shoes were comfortable, stylish, and versatile.

Ballet flats were popular among women for their comfort and simplicity. They were perfect for those who wanted a break from the towering heels that were also popular at the time. The ballet flat trend demonstrated that while the 2000s were a time of bold fashion choices, there was still room for timeless pieces that prioritized comfort without compromising on style.

The 2000s were a dynamic and influential decade in the world of fashion. From the luxury high heels of Manolo Blahnik to the rise of fast fashion brands like Steve Madden, women’s shoe trends were diverse and expressive. The influence of hip-hop culture brought high top sneakers into mainstream fashion, while the classic elegance of ballet flats offered a respite from the more daring styles. As we look back, the footwear of the 2000s serves as a testament to the era’s bold, experimental, and diverse fashion trends. Whether you were a fan of heels or flats, sneakers or sandals, there was a shoe for every style in the 2000s. And who knows, maybe we’ll see some of these trends make a comeback in the future! After all, fashion is known to be cyclical.