It’s finally spring! That means we ladies are finally free to expose our legs and feet without freezing, and personally, I don’t think there’s a better way to do that than with flats. Heels are elegant, sure, and they look gorgeous, but let’s face it – most of them hurt. Plus, what if you’re already six feet tall and don’t need the extra height? What if you have kids and are going to be on your feet chasing them around all day? What if you’re running errands downtown, and you don’t want to step over potholes in your stilettos?

Flats are practical, and they can be every bit as beautiful as heels. When wearing them, let material and pattern be your guides. A soft, canvas-type fabric is great to pair with casual outfits, shorts, and skirts. Basic ballet flats can go with anything from a little black dress to a T-shirt and jeans. Pointed toes are usually a bit classier, so pull those out if you’re wearing a pencil skirt or fitted dress. And sandals are very comfortable and feminine for summer. Winding-leg styles can draw attention to your gams, but be careful what you pair them with. If the print on your clothing is loud, go with footwear that’s a bit more subdued.

Overall, you can’t go wrong with flats. So shove those heels to the side on your shoe rack, because you’re going to need some more room in there!

1. Aquatalia by Marvin K. (Opus) – $245,

2. TWS by Camper – $160,

3. Holalita sandals – $465,

4. Campana Jelly flats – $80,

5. Beth Natural Heart Shoes – 170 GBP,

6. Proenza Schouler lace-up leather sandals – $595,

7. Camper Twins Flat Crescent Floral ballet flat – $200 Canadian,

8. Fred leather lace-up flats – $595,

9. Marc Jacobs Patent Flat Mouse slip-ons – $255 Canadian,

10. French Sole Harriet Orange croc pumps – 70 GBP,

11. Monsoon Accessorize ballerina pumps – 25 GBP,

* This story was contributed by Sara Bimmel, who writes about Halloween costumes at StarCostumes.