Many people associate sneakers with the gym or uber-casual clothing, but I’m here to tell you that you can really elevate your sneaker look. A few years ago, I spotted many stylish sneaker looks on women in Stockholm and Copenhagen. With the increasing popularity of sneakers here in the States, I even started a whole Pinterest board last fall called Sneaker Chic.
The key to looking pulled together is pairing them with an outfit with clean lines and in predominantly solid neutrals. Slip-on styles appear a bit dressier than lace-up options. And yes, you can even wear them with skirts and dresses if you’ve got the formula correct.
With fall merchandise now arriving in the stores, I’ve noticed many pairs of bejeweled sneakers on the shelves. Since I’ve often written about how blingy shoes and bags definitely count as jewelry in an outfit, I thought I’d give you some ideas of how to incorporate this trend into your wardrobe. And of course, both of these outfits I’m going to show you can easily be worn with a simpler, non-jeweled pair of sneakers as well.
First of all, here’s a sampling of what I’ve seen coming in at a variety of price points. Definitely jewelry for your feet, right?!
Now that you’ve got an idea of what’s out there, I first want to show you how to pair them with pants. I’d choose a slim (but not too skinny) pant that hits a couple inches above the ankle. J.Crew has a nice option in stretch black wool. This is a weight that’s suitable most of the year here in California. (note: Wear the sneakers either bare-foot or with peds — you don’t want socks showing, or it’ll wreck the look.)
This would look great with a long vest, or as some retailers are calling them, “sleeveless coats.” I think the cut and neutral color of this one by Alexander Wang is hot. If this isn’t your color, there are many other options out there. (I just saw a couple at Zara last week.) Even a cool blazer would work if you prefer sleeves.
If it’s still warm, then you can easily wear this with a black tank. If it’s a bit cooler, or you’d like to make it more work-appropriate, then wearing it with a simple knit, such as this one from Vince, is a nice option.
Now that you’ve got this base of solid colors, then it’s time to add some jewelry (My favorite part!). But I don’t want it to be too complicated or distracting, as then it’ll detract from the sneakers. I saw these silver egg necklaces by Sophie Buhai online, and I’m sort of obsessed with them. They come in two lengths, and I think the longer one would be ideal with the long vest.
I like the idea of a menswear-inspired watch to go with the vest. Shinola (made in the USA!) has a classic design called the Runwell.
The finishing touch is a sleek clutch by Alexander Wang. I like the touch of grey to add some dimension to the outfit and resonate with the crystals on the sneakers. It makes everything not so matchy-matchy.
So now let’s take it a different direction — how to wear sneakers with a dress. Again, I’m going to say keep it simple and clean with the outfit. This will make you look modern and sophisticated. For the dress, I chose this Rag & Bone ribbed stretch-wool design.
You have options for necklaces. You can either go with a shorter necklace with some punch, or a longer silhouette. I opted again for a longer style, this one by Erin Considine, as I like how it elongates the visual line and gives a little texture to the ensemble. I also like how the gold warms everything up.
These Amber Sceats earrings are a homage to the Dior originals, which do in fact appear to be coming a classic. (Who knew?) They are meant to be worn with the larger ball behind the ear.
The result of all these pieces put together is a sophisticated, urban woman-on-the-go. Is this your personal style?
If you could see yourself creating some sneaker ensembles, I encourage you to go play in your closet a bit and see what you can come up with. Use these ideas, and the looks on my Sneaker Chic board as inspiration, and then see how you can adapt it to your own style.
Keep your budget in mind, and remember the cost-per-wear principal. If it’s something you’ll wear a ton, then the cost-per-wear will go down and it’ll be a better investment. If it’s an item that will be worn infrequently, then see if you can find a less expensive version that will give you the same look.
And if your are so NOT a sneaker gal and you’d rather wear heels, then go for it! As with any fashion trend, it’s all about staying true to you!
I have been looking for a cool graphic t-shirt for at least a couple years. I have so many outfits I want to style it with! But I have such specific parameters in my head, that I haven’t been able to find what I’m looking for…I prefer a v-neck, scoop or tank (none of those tight, high crew-necks), I want it to be in MY size (not that of a pre-teen), I like neutrals, and puh-leese, it’s got to have a message that I support. Given that my pursuit has been fruitless, I decided to take matters into my own hands. Along with my blog-master, Jeff, and the website Teespring.com, we’ve come up with these t-shirts and tank, which in my mind, say it all. I purposely chose the distressed, industrial font in juxtaposition with the message.
Yes, this is currently for sale for the next ten days (Yay!), and there are five different options of brand/colors (all in the white/black/grey family). Check them out! I, personally, am ordering both a tank and a scoop, and I want to share with you how I’m going to style them.
First, let’s go with the weekend casual look, for which I’ll select the tank. For this, I want a pair of lightly distressed boyfriend jeans and a military jacket. I think the ideal jacket is by Current/Elliot. I bought one a while back, and it’s become a true staple in my wardrobe. Clearly, it has staying power, as they offer a similar design each season. This goes to show that it’s more than a trend. I think the shorter sleeves are perfect for changeable weather, which you definitely find in San Francisco.
For the distressed boyfriend jean, I don’t want anything too sloppy, but more of a relaxed, tapered leg. This pair by Kut from the Kloth seems just right, paired with the oversized jacket. You want to balance out an oversized top with a narrower bottom.
Given that this is a casual chic look, sneakers are the preferred shoe. Vince has come up with a new classic with their slip-on perforated style. (Reminiscent of the Van’s I used to wear in college!)
Yes, I must admit that I own these as well. Sometimes I wear them barefoot, but if it’s a little chillier out, then I prefer to wear a ped with them. I particularly like these by Hue. They have a little non-slip thing at the back, and as soon as I wear them for about 10 minutes, and my feet heat up, they stay in place all day.
I definitely want a hands-free bag while I’m out for the day, and this cross-body by Alexander Wang is very hot. The double slinky chain strap and soft, washed leather totally fit the vibe of the outfit.
Keeping with the hassle-free look, I’m opting for a short, mixed metal necklace by Rachel Zoe.
Tai has become a household name with their bohemian bracelets, and this layered look is a perfect example of why.
Stacked with a watch by Shinola (go made in the USA!), I think it’s a great combination.
To top off the look, just a little sparkle (of course!) in the ears with these warm/cool mix earrings by Rebecca Minkoff.
So now on to a more refined look, using either the v-neck, or the scoop, depending on your personal style.
This ensemble will take you out on a date (he should know how you feel about bling!) or meeting your friends for margaritas and guac. To step it up, I’m pairing the tee with this Alice + Oliva blazer, which features a very inspired design in back.
A skinny, darker wash pair of jeans is definitely in order for this look, and I am a huge fan of AG Prima jeans. (Many of my clients who swear they will never wear jeans are addicted to these!) They come in various washes, and are beyond soft.
A heeled bootie elevates everything, and a recent client will testify that these Paul Green booties were super-comfy first wear out, for the whole day. (Thanks to Elizabeth for road-testing them!)
I want a mixed-neutral bag that’s a bit more uptown for this outfit. Diane von Furstenburg has just the right one. It can be worn over the shoulder, or carried as a clutch, with the strap tucked inside.
Statment earrings are a must. Loving these by Dannijo for a Navajo meets fashionista edge.
In lieu of bracelets, I’m going for a multi-ring look. For a bold punch that’s in harmony with the earrings, I like this ring by House of Harlow.