The Quest for the Perfect Black Flats

Worst thing about my new job? I can’t wear my beloved Birkenstock sandals (and my go-to pair of black flats just bit the dust!).

Okay, I realize that if that’s the worst of it, I’m doing pretty good. And so far, my new library is great. The people are fantastic, and there’s lots of opportunities for improvements and the organization is open to change. If the worst thing is having to save my beloved Birkenstock sandals for the weekends, I think I can cope.

But seriously: finding new shoes is the worst.

This used to be easy. In reviewing my Zappos purchase history, I’ve reliably replaced black Børn flats every four years. Yes, they always discontinue the style I like; but I have always found a suitable replacement like clockwork over the past last 4 election cycles. Coincidentally, I always need new shoes when it’s time to pick a new President.

Only this time, I didn’t like the new Børn flats.

Okay, I liked them enough to get them in Navy (which is really a denim blue) but those are only for occasionally wearing with my not-black outfits, which aren’t that frequent. The stretchiness along the edges just isn’t want I want in my everyday black flats. So they went back.

Any my quest continues for my perfect ‘sole’ mate. (Sorry. I can’t resist bad puns).

perfect black flats

I tried a few other brands and styles, but still haven’t found the perfect match for me.

I need a decent arch support and prefer a sleek, no-frills style in most of my footwear. And you wouldn’t think it’d be such a challenge to find closed toed footwear, but I am hear to say the struggle is real after 3 unsuccessful attempts and finding new shoes for work.

So I’m expanding my search, and I’ve curated this collection of potential pairs.

I like trends like the ankle wrap styles, but am hesitant to invest in a pair that won’t be fashionable until they fall apart. Black flats are definitely a staple of my footwear and I want a high quality pair that I won’t have to replace anytime soon. Especially since it’s turning into such an ordeal!

Do you have a favorite pair of black flats? What’s your go-to brand for comfortable but chic shoes? 


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  • This made me laugh – “Coincidentally, I always need new shoes when it’s time to pick a new President.” 🙂 I am notoriously cheap when it comes to buying shoes, even though I tell myself to go for quality over quantity. However, I have a job where I mostly sit all day, so my comfort needs are fairly low. I keep hearing good things about Tieks flats, which are really pricy but are supposed to be super comfortable. Same with Tory Burch Reva flats–also quite expensive, and personally I don’t love the little logo thingy on them. Do you read the blog Franish ( She always has comfortable, practical, but still cute shoe choices. Good luck in your hunt!

    • It’s weird about the timing of my shoe purchases! But I’ve had black Born flats since high school and it’s been like clockwork every four years.

  • I’m also on the hunt for new black flats. I’m thinking of investing in a pair of French Sole flats, but also want to try the wraparound trend. Compromised by getting a serviceable pair at Target to do the trend and will probably wait until mid-fall for the proper pair. Living in Miami, I can get away with my summer flats for a few more weeks.

    • Oh I do like some of the French Sole laser cutout styles. I agree that for trendy, Target or similar is the way to go. Good luck with your search!