Strappy, blingy, grungy — it's the flight of the gladiators

There seem to be only two possible and polar opposite reactions gladiator sandals have received over the past two years. Some love it; others simply cannot bear the sight of it. But they are everywhere, from fashion runways to street corners. And if shoe trend forecasts are to be believed, we somehow don't seem to be getting enough of the Greco-Roman inspired footwear.

Flat or heeled

The good news is that there is a lot of variety to choose from. Gladiators in flats or the ones that come with wedged heels are chic and are recommended for a casual do. Strappy stilettos and platforms are best saved for parties and other casual evenings. Gladiator espadrilles are catching up rather quickly.

As far as patterns and styles go, flat gladiators seem to have a worthier offering. Ankle straps, sling backs that have innumerable criss-crosses on the foot, mid-calf tie-ups, zip-up net gladiators, the leather fringe type and the chunky bejewelled ones are all the rage now.

High heeled gladiators look best when teamed with skinny jeans or jeggings. Flats go well with a pair of baggy cargos. The strappier, the better. You could also opt for wide-strapped gladiators and ones that have buckles all the way to your calf if you are tall and if you prefer to wear a pair of shorts, a mini skirt or a knee-length dress.

The ankle strap gladiators look hip when paired with a tunic. If your top is subtle, jazz up your look by flaunting a pair of gladiators in a darker shade. Snakeskin sandals have quite a fan following.

Gladiators can be worn to work too as long as they aren't overly festooned. Move over black, brown and beige. Gladiators now come in a host of bright and funky colours. If you plan on wearing them as part of your evening ensemble, go in for a metallic pair.

Electric blue, bright yellow, hot pink, pearly white and shiny golden are colours you could experiment with.

Ornamentation is big. Blinger, the better. Chunky stones, big flashy buckles and petite sequins have made their way onto this type of footwear. As much as looks matter, it is best to go in for a pair that is comfortable and that supports your ankles well.

Gladiator sandals quite obviously accentuate one's legs so for all those who care to flaunt them in style, you might want to also work on getting a perfectly toned pair of legs. Lace up.