Today's Everyday Fashion: Sandals At Work

I love heels and I wear them a lot, but let's face it - some days flats are a must. I don't usually wear close-toe flats; my size 9.5 feet are awkwardly long, and I think I look like a capital "L" (they look great on other people though!). I do, however, love the look of flat sandals like the ones I'm wearing here with a pencil skirt. I wore this outfit to shop with not one but two clients in the same day last week. I wanted to look professional, but I also did more than 8 hours of shopping, so comfort was key. Not all sandals are made to be worn at work though. Three things to look for:
  1. Material. I would stick with either patent (shiny) leather, metallic or real leather. Anything too inexpensive (like brown leatherette) is not going to be dressy enough to wear with a pencil skirt.
  2. Shape. I think a thong between the toe is fine, but the shoe needs to have a substantial shape to it, meaning a strap around the ankle, or in general a lot more shoe than a flip-flop would have.
  3. Heel. I am a huge fan of shoes like these with a slight wedge. Not only do they look more dressed up than totally flat shoes, but I think they are more comfortable, too.
Do you wear sandals at work? How do you determine if they are appropriate?

Cardigan: Limited, $18
Shirt: Limited, $22
Skirt: J.Crew, $45
Belt: Gap, $10
Shoes: Nine West/DSW, $60 (same shoes)
Necklace: My Stella & Dot website, $79
Watch: Michael Kors, family gift
Ring: My Stella & Dot website, $49
Left bracelets: My Stella & Dot website $49 and $32
Right bracelets: My Stella & Dot website $59 and $39

1. Forever 21 cardigan, $19.80
2. Urban Outfitters cardigan, $44
3. Lands End cardigan, $18.99