Tablet Life & Arts

Mules ride back into style

Chances are, ladies, if you lived through the ’90s, you probably owned a pair of mules. And if you owned a pair of mules, then there’s an even greater chance that you’ve since thrown them out or they’ve taken up permanent residence in the back of your closet.

For those who have hung on to their mules — those backless shoes that had a bit of a heel — we have good news. The trend is back as one of the hottest fashion statements of spring.

For those who hated the trend, you’re probably groaning with disgust right now. But before you pass judgment on the re-emergence of a shoe style that had the misfortune of being named after a horse/donkey hybrid, we suggest you reconsider your feelings.

While the name is the same, the style has been revamped for a more modern, fresh look for spring. Designers like Jason Wu, Stella McCartney and Manolo Blahnik are just a few of the notable designers to put their own spin on the mule for spring 2014.

Ranging from open-toe, chunky wedges to closed-toe, skyscraping heels, these updated designer versions of the mule are far edgier and chicer than their ’90s predecessors.

From comfy wedges to eye-catching kitten heels, here are some of our favorite new mid-priced mules widely available at mass-market and department stores.

A pop of pink

When white is the official non-color of the season, it can be fun to add a pop of color to an otherwise neutral ensemble in the form of footwear. Case in point: Sole (Sense)ability’s hot-pink patent Maude mule. $64.99, Kohl’s.

Slip into comfort

You don’t have to sacrifice comfort for the sake of being on trend. Italian Shoemakers’ stylish Wedgewood II features a cushy foot bed for optimal comfort on days when you plan to cover a lot of ground. $39.99, Famous Footwear.

All in the mix

Hot on the heels (literally) of last spring’s mixed-media trend, Dana Buchman’s Hayden dress mule proves that it’s still on trend to be all mixed up. $69, Kohl’s.

Going backless

A dressier take on the wedge mule, the Webuary wedge by Covington (available in cognac and black) is great for transitioning from day to night and everywhere in between. $34.99, Sears.

Little miss sunshine

Like a good dose of vitamin D, the addition of AK Anne Klein’s sophisticated Hayden mule can brighten up your warm-weather shoe collection. Not a fan of yellow? The shoe is available in multiple color options. $44.95, DSW Shoe Warehouse.

Put a cork in it

An almost identical (and much less expensive) knockoff of Lucky Brand’s Miller2, Merona’s Nadia wedge mule is perfect for pairing with sundresses and shorts. $24.99, Target.