An ankle boot at work? Come on, you're having a laugh. Actually, we're not, because as of this autumn, looking good, staying dry and being comfortable have collided in some kind of work shoe utopia. Ankle boots have a bad rep. Many of us (wrongly) believe that they do cruel visual things to our calves. And it's true, an ankle boot can truncate a neat leg and make it appear bulkier than it's true proportions, but the knack here is finding a length, cut and finish to suit your shape and style.

Fortunately this autumn, ankle boots have grown in length (the mid calf boot doesn't exactly have the same ring to it..) and as well as their new proportions, the going trend is for a cut that stays slick against the skin, which means no unsightly gaping. This combination of length and shape has given the ankle boot its new status.

So that's the fashion background. Now, how do you wear the darn things? Well, for those free from traditional work style constraints, we say just plonk your new ankle boot with anything that takes your fancy: culottes, short skirts, midi skirts, trousers as wide as the Channel and floaty Seventies dress can all accommodate an ankle boot.

If you want to look neat and professional in the footwear department, avoid styles that have any kind of cowgirl tendencies. The more minimal the overall shape, the better, and if you can choose an almond toe or a pair finished with something Sixties and rectangular at the front; pointy ankle boots need not apply.

Corporates could find the ankle boot tricker and its true that a neat pencil skirt might err on the side of slutty when matched with anything too bold and shiny around the ankles. Having said that, the key to power in the office in feeling comfortable and strong, and the ankle boot has both of these in spades.

Sleek ankle boots in a soft finish like suede or velvet can transform a pair of simple tailored trousers. The key here is to leave just the right amount of skin between boot and trouser hem; we say somewhere between 2 and 4cm. Once you have this combination sorted, you can play with colour. A dark burgundy ankle boot, which taps into autumn's Seventies trend, will be best friends with pastels, greys and camel. Likewise, a black boot has an unexpected ally in navy trousers and dresses. I know, your mother always told you to never mix black and blue; well you're mother isn't always right...

Have a proper look at the inspiration above and see how a pair of simple ankle boots can make even a run of the mill midi and jumper look fresh. The all black look, second from the right, includes a pair of ankle boots that lace up at the front. Who said boots can't do sexy and serious at the same time?

Now that we've whet your appetite, here are some ankle boots for your perusal. Try them out, have fun playing with new proportions and rejoice in never again having to deal with soggy 10 denier tights at the toes when it rains.

#StepUpXFenwickBondStreet: If you're in a total pickle about which boot to plump for, come along to our exclusive shopping night at Fenwick Bond Street. There will be style advice from uber fashion stylist, Carolyn Asome, plus amazing discounts, champers and more... 

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Zara, £79.99Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 21.05.55

Nine West, £139Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 20.57.32

Isabel Marant, £585Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 20.56.11

Carvela, £160Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 21.03.15

LK Bennett, £275 whistles-ohi-high-zip-back-suede-boot-black-multi_03

Whistles, £185