Fashion

Instagram has fallen in love with these unusual high street sandals

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Kayleigh Dray
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Our poor little toes have been banished to the dark confines of our boots, tights and woolly socks all winter – but now, at last, warmer climes are well and truly on the horizon.

Which can mean only one thing: it’s time for our feet to wriggle free and step outdoors in a pair of summer sandals.



We did some careful Instagram analysis (or, y’know, we spent a lot of time scrolling incessantly through hashtags), and it seems as if there’s one particular style of sandals that has caught the eyes of fashion bloggers everywhere.

We’re talking, of course, about #pompomsandals – and, in particular, River Island’s take on the trend:

Say hello to River Island’s black floral embroidered pompom sandals

Say hello to River Island’s black floral embroidered pompom sandals

Decidedly more fun and kitschy than the norm, these strappy sandals have definitely won people over with their cute pompoms, tassels, and bold floral print.

Which means that all of those envy-inducing travel photographs on Instagram? Yup, a lot of them have become… well, more shoefies than selfies.

Venetia Falconer – who has garnered an impressive following on social media, thanks to her beautiful travel photos and videos – snapped a shot of herself wearing the sandals on a beach in Sri Lanka.

She captioned the shot: “What are those? These, these are my (Moroccan cheerleading squad go to an acid rave) sandals.”

The post quickly racked up 446 likes, with plenty of people rushing to comment on her colourful shoes – and reveal their intentions of buying the very same pair as soon as possible.

“These are UNREAL,” wrote one.

Another added that they had already popped onto the River Island website, writing: “Well, proceed to checkout then, even if it was hailing a moment ago. Their time will come!”



River Island, spotting Falconer’s post, smelled the beginnings of a trend – and quickly regrammed the selfie into their own feeds, where it scored over 15,000 likes.

“You heard it here first,” they wrote, adding that it’s now “officially sandal season”.

Cue a plethora of people screaming, “Omg I love them!” into cyberspace.

“These are lush,” wrote one. “Definitely purchasing them.”

Another added: “These are literally everywhere right now.”

And one, tagging her friend, commented: “These are right up our street.”

The style offers a brand-new twist to River Island’s previous sellout pom pom sandals, which – again – featured colourful adornments and simple strap detailing.

Instagrammer @the_bunlife, who managed to nab a pair of the originals before they flew off shelves, shared a photo of herself wearing them in a sandy lakeside retreat.

She captioned it: “Such a beautiful Sunday. Time to get the River Island pompoms out.”

Another lucky owner shared a snapshot of her footsies as she attempted a bit of sunbathing in the UK.

Judging by how popular the original pompom sandals were, it’s well worth stocking up on a pair of the new version ASAP.

They’re available to purchase for £36 in stores and on the River Island website – although, as is so often the case with a trending product, stocks are already running low so if they’re your kind of pompom sandal, you better hotfoot it (sorry) to the shops...

Images: iStock/River Island

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is editor of Stylist.co.uk, where she chases after rogue apostrophes and specialises in films, comic books, feminism and television. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends. 

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