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Charles&Keith, Spring 2024

Looking for the perfect pair of Mary Jane shoes? We found 8 great ones

Tina Lončar

February 29, 2024

Although Mary Jane shoes are still somewhat associated with the school uniforms, they have long gone beyond just children’s shoes. And not only that, they are one of the most desirable models among today’s trends, and thanks to their “tame” aesthetics and their history, they bring a touch of something childishly playful to every outfit.

The model has been popular since the 19th century , long before it even got its name. But it was only in 1904 when Brown Shoes Company “patented” the style by naming it Mary Jane. And no, it’s not about some fashion icon. The model was named after the comic book heroine from the series “Buster Brown” by Richard F. Outcault, who named the sister of the main character from the comic after his daughter. The Mary Jane model gained special momentum in the twenties when they confirmed their status as ideal dance shoes, becoming a symbol of the “flappers” subculture and jazz nights, and in the sixties, due to the global popularity of Twiggy, they returned in style and were worn in combination with mini skirts and pantyhose. Although they fell into oblivion for a while, today they are experiencing their return to the scene. From classic models to currently super popular ballerinas, they flooded the streets of fashion metropolises, and occasionally, in the spring/summer 2024 collections, we could also spot them on the runways. Although its version is very different from the “old” Mary Jane shoes, Marc Jacobs presented his vision for the warm season, who put the beloved model at the service of the “doll” atmosphere of his collection.

Photo: CPHFW Press
Photo: Acielle/Style Du Monde
Photo: CPHFW Press

Street style today usually combines them with nylons or short (white) socks, thus recreating the vibe of the sixties or an aesthetic that, at least in that small segment, resembles as a part of a school uniform. However, the Mary Jane model is actually very adaptable, and the outfit you choose does not have to be inspired by some past eras. If you are looking for your model before spring arrives, scroll and see which models we have selected.