ELLE Fashion Editor Sarah Zendejas and Birkenstock Provide Your Guide to Spring Style
Come spring, your wardrobe is ready for a refresh, even if all you want to do is relax. But don’t get anxious searching for new styles. Seasonal dressing can be simple and easy, like your favorite pair of sandals—which are also getting an update this spring.
The Birkenstock Arizona—yes, that one—has always been a pretty low-key, crazy comfortable shoe. It’s simple and sturdy: that’s the appeal. This spring, however, the 240-year-old brand decided that their classic could use a reboot. Don’t worry—that cushiony cork footbed remains. As do the velvety nubuck leather straps. But you’ll be surprised by these Birks’ flashy new hardware. “The Big Buckle allows us to offer a fresh perspective and have fun with a little footwear ‘bling’ without compromising on our original, authentic footbed,” said Jacqueline Van Dine, Birkenstock VP of Merchandising, about the new Arizona Big Buckle. “So you get a little sizzle with all the benefits of underfoot support and comfort.” That bit of flash caught our attention, as well as that of Elle Senior Fashion Editor Sarah Zendejas. “The larger buckle elevates the shoe, with curved edges of silver and gold hardware, and the polished gleam of metal complements the leather perfectly,” Sarah said. As a tribute to their new favorite spring sandals, she and her team at Elle put together five perfectly relaxed ways to wear the sparkly new Arizona.
The company considered carefully before launching an updated version of their well-known shoe. “With a rich history of over 240 years of shoe making, every style is deliberate, and every detail is vetted for true quality assurance,” explained Jacqueline. “So it’s no surprise that we took our time to get this one right.”
And did they ever! The Big Buckle is gorgeous in a way that causes a second take. There’s something different about these Birks, but it might take you a minute to land on why this pair looks extra chic.
This isn’t the first time that the Arizona has captured the imagination of the fashion fold. “Homage has been paid to Birkenstock by Phoebe Philo in Céline’s spring 2013 collection with a fur-lined version, to the more recent satin and crystal embellished iteration proposed by the house of Roger Vivier,” Sarah said.
“With a cult-like following, they are known for their dependability and adored as much as a pair of Levi’s 501s—a total classic,” said Sarah, about the iconic Birkenstock.
These easily recognizable fashions are perfect for playful updates. In addition to the outsized clasps, Birkenstock is also offering the sandal with printed leather straps in two colors, ceramic blue and rose.
We asked Sarah if there were other things we should consider when styling our Birks to keep our look current. “Always have a fresh pedicure if you are wearing the open-toe styles,” she advised. “That being said, the key to wearing your Birkenstocks while looking current is to express your personal style—everyone has a unique manner of putting themselves together, so wear them your way!”
And…can you wear Birks with socks? Really? “Absolutely,” Sarah said. Well, OK.
As to whether there will be more takes on the traditional style, “You can count on it! You’ll be seeing some great new closed-toe options from us,”said Jacqueline. (Those we’ll wear with socks.) “As well as some more fun new sandals!”