How to Wear Gladiator Sandals: The Summer Must-Have

by Emily Tozer

How to Wear Gladiator Sandals: The Summer Must-Have

Gladiator sandals are one of this season’s biggest trends. After making a statement on the runway, they’ve popped up in multiple forms, from retro ankle-length versions to metallic thigh-high pairs. Granted, a trend this bold can be pretty tricky to style, so we found 16 trendy bloggers to show you how to wear gladiator sandals this summer!


With a Party Dress



Tired of your barely-there sandals and cocktail dress combo? Try a pair of stiletto-heeled gladiator sandals to freshen up party looks. We love how Wendy’s Lookbook dressed up her suede gladiator sandals with a one-shoulder frock and a mini bag.


With a Retro Skirt



A tall gladiator sandal is perfectly in line with the season’s ’70s revival. Opt for simple pieces to keep your look modern. Think dark-wash denim mini skirt and black gladiator sandals, as Sheryl of Walk in Wonderland did.


With a Midi Dress



Letting a pair of knee-high gladiator sandals snake up above a midi dress is alluring without actually revealing much. For the most effective results, choose a dress in a color similar to your sandals, as Zina of Fashionvibe did.


With Cutoffs



If you’re wondering how to wear gladiator sandals on a casual day, try this outfit we spotted on Geneva of A Pair and a Spare. Team them with other wardrobe staples, too, like cutoffs and a military jacket.


On Vacation



Even if you’re packing light for vacation, you won’t want to be without a pair of gladiator sandals. An ankle-length pair is easy to make room for in your suitcase and versatile to wear. Aimee of Song of Style teamed hers with a festive cropped top and cutoffs, which we’ll be copying ASAP.


With an LBD



A simple, fuss-free LBD can handle heavier sandals, like these knee-high gladiators on Blair of Atlantic Pacific. Look to this effortless outfit for an example of how to wear gladiator sandals on a casual day in the city or out to dinner with girlfriends.


To Travel



Cute traveling outfits are all about practicality, and in the summer that means lots of layers and comfy shoes. A flat pair of gladiator sandals—that aren’t too difficult to tie—lets you move about with ease. This thin-strapped pair on Valerie of Simple et Chic nicely balances out her heavy cardigan, too.


To Brunch



Tan suede is the name of the accessories game this season, so these gladiators will get a lot of wear. We’ll be copying this chic outfit on Charlotte of The Fashion Guitar for weekend brunches with the girls.


With a Peasant Dress



Julia of Gal Meets Glam gives us another chic and easy option for wearing gladiator sandals this summer. A peasant dress—mini or maxi—plays up the boho vibe of these lace-up sandals. Stick to cognac shades and gold jewelry to work in the ’70s trend, too.


On the Beach



Pink Peonies blogger Rachel’s metallic gladiator sandals are the perfect pair to dress up or down. For carefree summer style, she wore them on vacation with an off-the-shoulder dress and a pretty straw tote. They’d also work with a colorful dress or an LBD for a beach wedding.


With a Romper



Is there anything easier for summer dressing than a cute romper? Sazan uses gladiator sandals to quickly elevate a super simple outfit.


On Date Night



Need a new look for date night? Wendy’s Lookbook has the perfect way to wear gladiator sandals on a night out. Her tall gladiator sandals with a little heel are much more suitable for dressing up than a flat pair. Just add a mini dress! Pairing high sandals with a higher hemline gives the gladiator sandal a sexy spin.


With a Trench Coat



As the weather transitions, look to the layering skills of Nina of Hello Shopping. Style a tall pair of black gladiator sandals with a mini dress and a long trench coat.


To a Festival



Summer festivals are probably the most obvious place to wear gladiator sandals. But that doesn’t mean you have to look like everyone else there. Take a cue from Jennifer of Native Fox, and tone down the rest of your look to let the sandals make your statement.


With an Off-the-Shoulder Dress



Courtney of What Courtney Wore knows how to make gladiator sandals work for nearly any summer occasion. A cute off-the-shoulder dress and a statement clutch work perfectly with this metallic pair.


To the Beach



Want to stand out on the beach this season? Team a tall pair of gladiator sandals with a lace romper and oversized sunglasses, as seen on Peace Love Shea.