August more or less flew by, but that’s OK because truly great things happen when the weather starts to cool down. Pumpkin spice lattes reappear (we’re basic, sue us), mosquitoes return to the infernal abyss from whence they came. And we can finally ditch our worn-down summer sandals for some cute neutral ankle boots without fear of sweat puddling between our toes. Hooray.
Why neutral? Well, if you’re spending a good chunk of your precious fall budget on a pair of boots, chances are you want those girls to go with damn near everything. You want to wear ‘em down to the nubs. Plus, these days, limiting yourself to so-called “neutral” shades (that includes black, white, gray, brown, beige and sometimes even animal print, according to some fashion insiders) doesn’t put the kibosh on your self-expression. Between all the different heel types, toe shapes, sole thicknesses and materials out there, the possibilities are still pretty endless.
Why ankle boots? Because they hit right around that sweet spot where most jeans are hemmed, meaning your denim (another fall nonnegotiable) won’t bunch up uncomfortably if tucked and you’ve got the option of showing off your pulled-high (statement) socks by cuffing your pants a reasonable number of times — no pesky loss of blood circulation here — if the mood strikes.
From some extremely chunky platforms to Western booties, find your perfect pair of wear-with-everything ankle boots by shopping the slideshow above. Pump them up with daring plaids, neons, animal prints, florals or even just (drumroll) head-to-toe neutrals.