UPDATE Spring 2012:
We began to see the return of jellies several springs ago and
the trend shows no sign of slowing. This season, we see some new
versions available by the likes of J. Crew and Crocs. Crocs, a
well-entrenched player in the plastic shoe category, has created
a new style they are calling the “Springi Flat” (shown below in
a very preppy pink and green). The J. Crew version is more in
keeping with their other ballet flats offerings (this one called
the Rainy Day Bow
only in plastic and some very bright shades (dare we say 80s neon – see
below). Both of these options will cost you a little more than what you
might think plastic shoes are worth (from $40 - $58.00). A stand out
choice, and one that offers much more authentic styling, is the new
jelly shoe offered by Happy Scarf. At only $20.00, these are the
perfect choice for this trend. Check out the clear pair shown here.
Happy Scarf also has some great 80s-inspired color choices like gold,
electric blue, and hot pink.
haven’t ever owned a pair of jelly shoes, here’s the lowdown.
They are easy and comfortable to wear. They are made from PVC plastic,
allowing them to be made into any color. They can even be infused with
glitter. And, the fact that they are made out of plastic makes them
great for anything water related. In the 80s, I had them in a wide range
of colors and styles, some casual and some dress jellies. At less than
$5.00 (oftentimes as little as $1.00), they were cheap enough to allow
for a pair for each outfit in your closet! A word of warning, though –
they do make your feet sweat!
A Little History Lesson
We found a link to a March 1985 story on
the history of the rise in popularity of jelly shoes. Read the story here. They were introduced at the 1982 World's
Fair in Knoxville, TN and then again a year later at a shoe exposition
in Chicago by Grendha Shoes. It was there that a buyer for New
York's Bloomingdale's saw their display and ordered 2,400 pairs in nine
different styles. They went into the catalog and on the main floor
of the story, and the trend took off from there. In order to stay
ahead of the cheap knock-offs (and they were cheap - you could buy them
anywhere for between $1-2), Grendha released new styles every 6 months.
The designers of these new styles included none other than fashion great
Jean-Paul Gaultier. Pretty cool back story for a shoe made out of
So, slide on into some plastic, and you
will feel so bitchin' you will have people telling you to "get over