It may seem like a nanosecond, but sneakers–the antithesis of high-heels–have been basking in the fashion limelight for several years now. Credit the “athleisure” trend, and a taste for more comfortable clothing, but the ascendance of stylish sneakers for women also owes a debt to Phoebe Philo, creative director at Celine for ten years.
Her philosophy of comfortable luxury trickled down to footwear. She showed both easy-to-walk-in block heels and fur Birkenstocks in her collections over the years. And by appearing in Stan Smith sneakers while taking a bow on the runway, she fueled a love affair with Adidas, converting high-heel loving, style-conscious women into sneaker lovers. Raise your hand if you can find a designer who hasn’t added rubber-soled styles to his or her fashion line.
When choosing your new kicks (as the kids would say) think namely about proportion. Ladies who are heavier up top, or broad through the shoulders can basically get away with any style. If you’re more or less average in proportion, don’t get carried away with the overall size of the shoe; your best bet is to go for a more streamlined style.
Not a slave to trends? For less of a statement but to still look au courant, go with a pair of simple soles with neutral colors from the likes of Tretorn, Puma, Nike and Adidas, who have climbed on the sneaker bandwagon with reboots of their old icons. Wear these classic sneakers with black jeans and a blazer, a pencil skirt, a sweater and pleated skirt, cropped trousers or a jumpsuit.
You could go full bore athleisure, but an airy frock with feminine puffy sleeves helps balance things out. Rather than wearing them with leggings or running tights, opt for a suit, even a dressy one, for contrast. For weekend wear, go for fun with florals, metallics or patterns. Keep the rest of your outfit pared down in color and style.