How to Wear Lace-Up Ballet Flats

You don't have to be a ballerina to rock ballet flats with ribbons!
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Image of model wearing Daria lace-up glittered leather ballet flats with beige ribbon ties by Tabitha Simmons, via NET-A-PORTER

Elegant, feminine, and classy: what more could you want from a shoe?!

Over the past few seasons, brands have been taking inspiration from the beautiful world of ballet: from sleek bodysuits to whimsical tulle skirts, it is now easier than ever to channel your inner ballerina!

One ballet-inspired trend that has caught my eye in particular, though, is lace-up ballet flats, specifically flats with ribbons that tie around the ankle like ballet shoes. And, ever since I saw the gorgeous high-end versions by designers such as Miu Miu and Ballet Beautiful, I knew I had to get a pair for myself!  

Luckily, more affordable retailers such as Zara and ASOS have started selling their own versions of lace up ballet flats, making it easy for everyone to participate, regardless of budget.

Keep scrolling to see four ways to style lace-up ballet flats that will inspire you to incorporate ballerina fashion into your wardrobe.

Lace-Up Ballet Flats: Outfit #1

"How to Wear Tie-Up Ballet Flats" Outfit #1 featuring gray marled short-sleeved t-shirt dress, thin gold cuff bracelet with three clear stones on either side, gold star and moon lariat necklace with clear stones, straw panama hat with black bow, pale-pink ballet flats with pale pink ribbon tie, gold circular stud earrings with tiny clear stone in the center, white bucket bag with drawstring, gold hardware, and black edges

Products: Dress - Gap, Cuff - Barneys Warehouse, Necklace - Nordstrom Rack, Hat - Kohl's, Flats - Saks Off 5th, Earrings - Nordstrom Rack, Bag - Forever 21

Whether you're running errands or meeting some friends for brunch, this laid-back but trendy outfit is the perfect way to integrate tie-up ballet flats into your everyday wardrobe.  

I chose these pretty pale-pink ballerina flats because they look very much like traditional ballet shoes, and would look great with just about any outfit.

As for the rest of the look, simply throw on a casual t-shirt dress, grab a chic white bucket bag, and accessorize with dainty jewelry; this delicate cuff bracelet (which, at the time of writing, is 40% off its sale price of $29), this boho star-and-moon lariat necklace, and these cute stud earrings are perfect for adding some subtle sparkle to your ensemble.

Lastly, don a straw panama hat to protect your face from the summer sun.

Lace-Up Ballet Flats: Outfit #2

"How to Wear Tie-Up Ballet Flats" Outfit #2 featuring crew-neck, racer-back, fit-and-flare bright pink lace dress with scalloped edges; gold curved bar earrings with clear stones, Essie Gel Couture nail Polish in "First View," a baby blue with subtle shimmer; Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lip liquid lipstick in "Solow," a warm, bright medium pink; antiqued-gold bracelet with orange rectangular stones, muted chartreuse circular stones, and magenta oval-shaped stones; pinkish-crème hard clutch with gold hardware; muted blue-green satin ballet flats with front bow and grosgrain ribbon ties

Products: Dress - ASOS, Earrings - Nordstrom Rack, Nail Polish - Macy's, Liquid Lipstick - Colour Pop, Bracelet - Nordstrom Rack, Clutch - Accessorize, Flats - Topshop

Who says that flats have to be casual? If you have a special event and don't like wearing heels, a pair of satin lace-up flats are just as dressy; not to mention that they're infinitely more comfortable!

For a fun look that's sure to stand out (in a good way!), pair these muted blue-green ballerina flats from Topshop with a girly bright pink fit-and-flare lace dress. (Note that this one is a splurge, but if your style is feminine and you have a lot of events coming up this Summer, I'd say it's definitely a worthwhile investment.)  

Next, add some unique pavé curved bar studs and a gemstone bracelet with a modern-antique feel.  

Pick up a pale neutral-toned clutch to keep the attention on your shoes and dress, and finish off the look by swiping on some pink matte liquid lipstick and a subtly shimmery baby blue nail polish. 

Lace-Up Ballet Flats: Outfit #3

"How to Wear Tie-Up Ballet Flats" Outfit #3 featuring pale-blue-and-white shirting-striped sleeveless top with ruffle trim at front and back, black cat-eye sunglasses with faded-purple ombré lenses, skinny cognac-brown bow high-waist belt, super-high-rise light-wash denim shorts with cuff, gold statement necklace with large clear oval-shaped stones, gold bangle with hook detail, gold marquise earrings with clear stones, dark-wash denim pointed-toe ballet flats with ties with red-and-white stitching, light brown top-handle bag with shoulder strap

Products: Top - Bloomingdale's, Sunglasses - Nordstrom Rack, Belt - shoes.com, Shorts - Gap, Necklace - J.Crew Factory, Bracelet - Nordstrom, Earrings - Nordstrom Rack, Flats - Zappos, Bag - Nordstrom Rack

This outfit is the perfect example of how to wear ballerina flats to class, if you're in school for the summer semester, or even just out and about. Plus, this look, with its unique denim lace-up flats, is a great way to test out denim accessories if you haven't already.

Start off by tucking a sophisticated ruffled blouse into a pair of high-waisted denim shorts.  Add a pretty bow belt to emphasize your waist.

Now on to jewelry: I chose this chic statement necklace because it'd look great against the blue tones in the outfit; gold crystal-embellished marquise earrings and a cool hook-detail bracelet add further visual interest to the ensemble.

Put on a pair of classic black sunglasses and grab a goes-with-everything faux leather bag, and you're all set to go!

Lace-Up Ballet Flats: Outfit #4

"How to Wear Tie-Up Ballet Flats" Outfit #4 featuring black high-neck short-sleeved midi-length dress with lace top and tulle skirt, OPI Nail Lacquer in "Thrill of Brazil," a classic true red; gold bangle bracelet with flower with faux pearl in the center, gold triple-pearl drop earrings, black reflective suedette clutch, metallic gold ballet flats with black bow with gold tips and Michael Kors logo charm, trim, and ribbon ties

Products: Dress - ASOS, Nail Polish - Target, Bangle - Nordstrom Rack, Earrings - BaubleBar, Clutch - Lord & Taylor, Flats - Lord & Taylor

I've saved the most dramatic look for last, and, like Outfit #2, this ensemble is an example of how to wear ballet flats for a night out; in fact, these gorgeous gold-and-black ballerina flats look perfectly at-home when paired with a cocktail/black-tie outfit.  

Although it'll look like you spent a long time getting dressed up in this ensemble, it's actually really easy to put together!  

Just put on an elegant lace-and-tulle midi dress. (Like the dress featured in Outfit #2, this one is a little on the expensive side, but the fact that you can pair it with almost any accessories and wear it year-round makes it a smart splurge.)

Next, add a vintage-looking flower bangle and some classy pearl drop earrings.

A low-key black clutch is always a safe choice, considering that the tie-up flats I included in this outfit are more extravagant-looking (although feel free to choose a more boldly colored clutch if you're feeling brave). 

Finally, paint your nails in a classic true red for a little pop of color.

What do you think?

Would you wear tie-up ballet flats? Does the dance world inspire your wardrobe? If so, what kinds of dance are you inspired by? Let me know in the comments!

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