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26 October 2017

An Ode To Sneakers

The fashion world has been enamoured by trainers for the last few years, constantly re-interpreting them season after season. From reviving iconic tennis shoes to reimagining those garish running shoes your dad always wears, and even a stint of previously sneered at heeled sneakers. Despite their changeability, they feel certain - a good pair of sneakers will get you far, figuratively and literally. I spent much of my younger years shunning them, telling my parents they weren't fashionable only to be laughed at by said parents when I slipped into my first pair of Adidas trainers for the sake of fashion at the age of fifteen.

High heels aren't going 'out of style' or being shunned, but the option of something a little softer is so appealing when it comes to a day on the run. What started for me with a single pair of Adidas Campus 90s (I still have them) has evolved into a strong relationship. My favourites? A pair of white Acne Studio tennis shoes, leather and with silver anchors sewn on. You've seen them a million times, no doubt - they're dirty and worn now, but still loved on a weekly basis. Trainers are one of the few types of shoes that feel as though they were made to be worn in and loved. How many of us have bought a pair of new trainers and said, 'I just need to get them a little dirty - they're too clean'. Like a well worn in knit, there's something home-ly about a pair of worn-in shoes, and no shoe lends itself better to that than sneakers do.

The shoes that were once seen as hideously un-hip to wear outside the gym now feel like the go-to - and it makes sense. Wear a silk skirt with a pair of heels, and you look like you're headed to a ball - wear a silk skirt with some Reeboks? You're just popping out. It takes the most elegant of dresses and makes them cool, ready for the day and gives you a whole new way to look at your wardrobe. Items deemed too 'formal' become flexible, ready for what you need them for - as clothes should be. The strangeness of calling an item of clothing 'wearable' is not lost on me, but sneakers certainly aid the less 'wearable' items in becoming closer to staples. Even a pair of Gucci loafers aren't quite so effective when it comes to making the smart, casual.

Acne and Balenciaga are touting more garish options this season, but I'm partial to the plain white sneaker. Sporty, but never too much so, and laughably easy to wear with whatever you want. Daywear to evening wear has changed from a complicated array of accessories to the simple switch of one thing: your shoes. Maybe, like Pandora Sykes posits, we're looking for stability, or maybe we're looking for something easy. Our schedules are hectic and never-ending, to be busy is to be professional nowadays - comfort, ease and simple choices are appealing.

These particular shoes, for me, are nostalgic; I grew up flipping through photo albums of my mum kicking around in the same Reebok's during her time at university. When I headed off to University, it felt almost natural to invest in a pair - to walk in her footsteps (pun intended). Trainers were perfect for running to University when I'd overslept, and they're even better for running around London between errands and meetings. There's something undeniably sexy and powerful about high heels, but even more so about shunning relying on high heels for that effect and embracing something for it's practicality. Saying, 'hey - I can look good in the most casual of items. I can make this look good.' Never mind the obvious freedom given to women to decide what makes them feel good, and put together - whether that be a pair of Louboutin's or a pair of Nike's. It's important to be able to make that choice for yourself, to drive the conversation about 'looking like a woman' to include anything that women want. Women are constantly being told how to dress, from skirt lengths to religious clothing, so while a pair of dad sneakers or crocs dominating mainstream fashion might seem insignificant, it could just be a sign of things changing. A small revolutionary act that puts female comfort first, and celebrates that comfort as beauty.

Whatever it is about sneakers that makes them so enduring, it always feels good to slip into something more comfortable.

REEBOK trainers (here), H&M skirt, jumper and earrings.


  1. Oh, I hate brand new sneakers, I always have to wear them for a few weeks and, as you said, get them dirty, to fall in love with them! Lovely post and lovely outfit, love the long skirt and sneakers together :)

  2. I am a huge fan of this look and yes, I am also a sneakers girl at heart. As you said, it's so easy to wear and style and comfortable too.

    Shireen⎜Reflection of Sanity

  3. I'm with you on this. I love the popularity of sneakers at the moment and getting to be stylish and comfortable. And I like that they can tone down an outfit so we can wear formal stuff without looking overdone or out of place (although if that's what you want to do then go for it!)

    Belle in Black and White

  4. Instead of splurging on a new pair of shoes, it is now very easy just to buy a pair of beautiful shoe clips and attach them where you want on your shoes.
    style shoe


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