15/07/2013 16:57 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

The Experimentalist: How To Wear Flatforms

You've got platforms covered, but can you wear the latest footwear fad? Alexandra Jones is The Experimentalist and she found out how to wear flatforms, then reported back on whether they're worth the investment...

If you're of a certain generation (mine) you've most likely been raised on a pop culture diet of makeover shows and reality TV. In the early 2000s I was a chubby teen trying to get my first snog and totally addicted to the ugly-duckling-turned-dazzling-swan stories in shows such as What Not To Wear and How to Look Good Naked. As with all good parables, there was a warning at the heart of these fairy tales for frumps: don't be sucked in by trends, stick to shape-specific classics.

And after all those years of indoctrination, it has been with a degree of discomfort that I have found myself becoming fonder and fonder of flatforms. They just seemed so faddy, so opposite to the teachings of Gok et al. Something you'd look back on in a few months and think 'guh?'


'Yeah, I thought it would be a passing fad,' agreed stylist Amy Bannerman, when I asked her opinion 'but by the looks of things flatforms are here to stay.' Hovering somewhere between Ginger Spice and Japanese okobo they appeared on the Prada and Celine catwalks, then trickled down to pretty much every shop on the high street. Obviously, I'd have to try them.

'Flatforms can be weirdly flattering but don't wear them with full length super skinny jeans or leggings, you'll look like a golf club,' warned Amy. 'Wear with denim cut offs if you have the legs for it or with a pretty vintage summer dress - the shoes will update the outfit and stop you looking too Glasto-circa-2009. They would also modernise a classic chino for a cool summer look.'

I wore these floral ones from Asos to work (where my colleagues are becoming increasingly desensitized to my sartorial schizophrenia) and I loved them. They're fun and young and quirky. I was worried they'd make my short legs look even stumpier, but they gave me height without the usual discomforts of high heels and went well with the midi-length. The ones I tried didn't have too much of a stack, so were easy to clomp around in for the day and they made my plain grey dress look infinitely cooler.

The thing is, I have been so affected by the makeover shows of my youth that for years I have found it strangely difficult to shop without the disapproving spectres of Trinny and Susannah appearing at my shoulder to chastise me for my VPL or make me try on something with an A-line. And, given that I had previously refused to buy anything with even a vague hint of peplum on account of it being too fleeting a trend, the real question was, did flatforms have enough staying power to warrant the investment?

Well, it wasn't until my friend pointed out how much my style had changed since becoming the Experimentalist that I realised worrying whether they'll last for the next 10 years is a waste of time.

That's right; I've attained a level of Zen previously unknown. I've unfettered myself from the shackles of buying only sensible grab that suits my pear shape. I've come to think: PISS OFF. I CAN WEAR WHATEVER I WANT. And right now, irrespective of whether they're a flash in the pan or a future classic, what I want is to wear flatforms.

Find out how to wear the latest trends with The Experimentalist here.