Living in New York City has no-doubt changed my perspective on footwear. While my go-to kitten heels and riding boots may be perfect for a late-night soiree or a Sunday brunch, most of the time, my step count is in the thousands, meaning my footwear is of utmost importance.Â
As a 24-year-old, orthopedics shockingly aren’t my first choice. While I’m willing to give up a bit of comfort for a stylish shoe, it wasn’t until a late-night spiral into the archives ofÂ Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen that I discovered you could have both. Yes, the Full House twins and designer duo behind The Row have a favorite pair of walking sandals. Spoiler alert: it isn’t their own.Â
Behold, the Teva. While I had experimented a few times with the open-toe style during my days growing up on the Florida coast, I buried them deep in my closet, thinking I wouldn’t be able to make them work with my newfound city girl wardrobe full of oversized blazers and palazzo pants during the warmer months. It wasn’t until IÂ saw them on Mary-Kate Olsen that I knew I could make them work. So when I was invited to fly across the country with Teva to live my granola girl best life at Lake Tahoe for a week, I put them to the test.Â
After days straight of hiking, kanoeing, sailing, and wine-tasting on the brand’s annual Camp Teva retreat, I have to say, I’m fully onboard; Both Orignal Universal and platform styles are now integrated into my summer wardrobe.
While you’d think chunky hiking sandals don’t exactly bode well when you’re walking around SoHo, I’ve gotten so many compliments already. It feels like Teva is trying to transform itself and step outside the box with a slew of designer collaborations and elevated colorways that feel much more inclined to the fashion crowd over the camp counselor one. Just this month, the California-based brand launched three styles in collaboration withÂ ChloÃ©, cementing itself once again as a footwear brand for the cool, edgy girl.
Over the last few years, the rise of “ugly” dad sandals has been on the move, with design houses and nature brands alike serving up fresh takes on the controversial style. While most quilted, lambskin version of the chunky shoe can cost upwards of $2,000 on the resale end, my trusted pair of Tevas begin only at $55, with platform, hiking versions costing only $20 moreâ a mere fraction of the highly-lauded designer versions. Plus, you won’t feel bad about any scuffs or lived-in marks you’ll get from hiking a mountain-top (or, if you’re like me, accidentally dragging your feet across a subway grate on your way to your local NYC smoothie shop).Â
To be honest, it’s probably better that the general population doesn’t catch on quite yet to the best sandals I’ll ever own in my lifetime. I’ll gatekeep these shoes for as long as I can so I can continue to live my cool, indie-girl fanatasy alongsideÂ ChloÃ«Â Sevignyâ another Teva Truther.Â If that isn’t something to celebrate, I don’t know what is.