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Supercool Salt-Water

A late-season sandal that'll see you through many summers to come? These fashion faves are a stone-cold classic.

It’s still just about summer, right? So let’s talk sandals. I’ve lost count of the number of my friends who’ve bought Salt-Water sandals this season. They’re one of those word-of-mouth micro-trends that you’ll never see front row, but I’m spotting these simple, woven, flat leather shoes on every street, beach and Insta holiday snap at the mo, and who knows, we could yet have an Indian summer.

Are you familiar with this US heritage brand? It’s the brainchild of one Walter Hoy of St Louis, Missouri. During WW2 he owned a military boot factory but, due to leather shortages, didn’t have any material with which to create a pair of sandals for his daughter. So he fashioned her some using factory offcuts and, voila, Salt-Water was created.

Still a family-run business 70 years on, today they churn them out in huge range of colours, in both adult and children’s sizes – and weirdly they look as good on a grown woman as they do on a toddler. We especially like the metallics (the rose-gold slides are especially pretty and perfect for poolside posing), classic tan, chic navy and red (looks banging with denim). Heck, we’ll take them all – if Salt-Water aficionados Alexa Chung and Sienna Miller haven’t already snapped everything up.

Blue Ivy, Alexa Chung & Violet Grohl

Their USP is that the leather has a waterproof sealant so it’s washable – which makes them brilliant for paddling in the sea or if you get caught in a summer (or early autumn) downpour. You can sponge them  clean with a mild detergent or even bung them in the machine. And that clever leather also moulds itself to your feet – indeed friends have said they’re the most comfortable shoes they’ve ever worn. Plus, the ankle-strap brass buckles are rust-proof, and they cost a reasonable £50-ish. So, all in all, they’re keepers.

And, best of all, as we’re approaching the end of the holiday season, they’re a canny buy in the sales right now (try John Lewis, Office or the Salt-Water website) – the classic design means they’ll endure for next summer and many more to come.

Words: Kerry Potter

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