If there’s a shoe trend that’s outlived its expected longevity both on the runway and on the street, it’s gladiator sandals. Fashionistas can’t get enough of this chic style and designers can’t get enough of playing with its possibilities to take a new spin on a very old standby. How old? Thousands of years. Ancient Greece and Rome gave us this footwear whose straps and ties no doubt were created in the spirit of function as well as form. Without zippers and the small buckles we take for granted today, keeping the shoe on the foot meant manipulating leather to encase it. Today, it holds timeless appeal and continues to give edgy peek-a-boo sex appeal that creates an instant look paired with any of our basics. This spring, extreme heeled versions were aplenty on catwalks and stores are still serving up flat and wedge versions to sate our never-ending desire for ancient style.
Black and brown is standard color fare for gladiators, and while Alexander Wang showed versions in the erstwhile colors, he also took a flight of fancy with these white heels that creep up the leg in an enticing way.
This full knee-high version from Altazurra shows serious attention to detail, construction and the full covering of the leg. A great way to style mini skirts and dresses without showing too much skin.
When I think about what's next for sexy style, I always turn to Versace, and Donatella never disappoints. Nude gladiators keep your gams looking long and lean, as well as cool and hip.
With the onslaught of metallic details, a rose gold hue brings a sense of originality as well as sheer prettiness to everything it touches.
$29.94 at DSW.
New variations on an old theme are often what fashion is all about, but sometimes you want to stick with a classic. I imagine these would fit right in on the ancient streets of Athens, on any market day or trek to the gladiator games.
$44.99 at ModCloth.
These days, it's hard to imagine leather without studded details, and the gold accents here are the perfect mix with the nude background color. The chunky heel makes these ideal for a night out and long term wearability.
$45 at JCPenney.
Black and coral are a stellar combination, gold edging makes this pair of shoes look way more high end than its price and provenance. If you have room for one more pair of sandals this summer, these are a serious contender.
$14.80 at Forever21.
Can't you see these donning sun kissed legs, paired with a perfect mini dress for cocktails on Saturday night? They'd also look divine with a pair of dressy shorts and a vest.
$148 at Nasty Gal.
If you're after the full-coverage look, and want to channel warrior princess style, these are the way to do it. Pair them with denim and a floral pattern for a day look that doesn't disappoint.
$41 at Cicihot.
Need a little sparkle to get your feet going? The chain and rhinestone detail on these are your ticket to an outdoor beach wedding or dressing up boyfriend shorts and a basic Tee for brunch.
$69.99 at 6pm.