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Item of the week: the classic mule

By Rachel Douglass


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(From left) Kenneth Cole, Simmi and Burberry. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

What it is:

While in recent years, fashion has favoured what could be considered flashy iterations of this classic look, this season it was the traditional mule that was dominant on the runways. The footwear item is defined by its lack of constraint round the ankle, and can be found with both flat and heeled soles. It is the latter, however, that held precedence for SS24, seen on an array of runways in varying yet decidedly sleek forms that stuck close to the silhouette that has come to be today.
Madewell. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Why you’ll want it:

There was certainly no shortage of mules on the runway for SS24, however this style has garnered a more seasonless status among fashion’s most distinguished brands, which regularly return to the reliable shoe for annual collections. While in the past, many have adapted the footwear to take on more contemporary forms, this period marked a specific return to classics, straying from avant garde shapes to favour block colours and staple shapes. As such, the mule once again proves that it remains malleable to ever-changing demands, providing shoppers with a style they can rely on again and again.
Karl Lagerfeld. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Where we’ve seen it:

Classic iterations of the mule were seen in the collections of Ferragamo, Peter Do and Jason Wu, each of which opted for pared back colourways for their open-toe designs, all complete with comfortable heels for daily wear. Pointed toes, meanwhile, were present on the runways of Knwls, Zimmermann and Valentino, some more extreme than others, yet each remaining true to the customary style. There were some that strayed just slightly, and mostly when it came to the colour. Altuzarra, Bottega Veneta and Versace were among those, opting for bright hues for their own designs.
Sorel. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

How to style it:

The key quality of the classic mule is its ability to adapt to the occasion. The typically comfortable shape and sleek appearance grants it the accessibility for daily wear, while also providing the option to take the wearer into the evening through a simple change of clothing. With this in mind, the mule can work well with wide-cut jeans and a loose-fitted shirt as well as a sparkly mini dress or tailored suit.
Pretty Ballerinas. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.
The classic mule, as always, made an elegant comeback once again for SS24, a move that the shoe continues to make year in, year out. In sleek, minimalist variations, the footwear style marked its territory on the runways of the biggest designers, moving towards refined silhouettes for the everyday wardrobe.
Madewell. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Similar items available for (pre)order can be found in the FashionUnited Marketplace. You can find them by clicking on this link.
Item of the Week