THE EVOLUTION OF THE HIGH FASHION SNEAKER

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Converse x Missoni

With Converse x Missoni‘s new capsule collection joining the extensive list of designer sneakers, it is impossible to argue that casual trainers are more in style than ever before. While the idea of a designer sneaker is nothing new to the industry, the trend is growing and becoming more extreme, showing up at the source of all things style-saavy. We first saw designer sneakers popping up in the early 2000’s, when Stella McCartney launched a collection for Adidaswhich was followed the next year by Alexander McQueen‘s surprising collaboration with Puma. Fast forward several years and the trend became more than just collaborations with athletic brands, and designers were putting sneakers in their own collections. In 2010, Isabel Marant debuted her wedge sneaker, which exploded as an emerging fashion movement. Wedge sneakers were seen in Beyoncé’s music video, and even trickled down into the more affordable fashion market. Now in present day 2014, fashionistas are sporting sneakers of all varieties- from high-end designer footwear, to your average pair of Nikes from a sporting goods store. Inspired by the trend, The Untitled Magazine decided to take a more in-depth look into the world of the high fashion sneaker from street style in cities like New York and London, to high end department stores, and even the runways.

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Street Style

Fashionistas everywhere turn to contemporary culture on the urban streets to seek the latest trends. When a look is seen while walking through a fashion-forward city we not only know it is on-trend, but also get an idea of how to style it. On the morning walk to work in New York City each day, you will see sneakers being sported by all sorts of  stylish women in a variety of ways. One look we are seeing a lot of is “Normcore”, which is a hybrid of  the words “normal” and “hardcore”. The trend is basically known for fashion down to its simplest form. It includes nothing too loud or flashy, but more along the lines of t-shirts, denim, and yes- sneakers. The other way we are seeing sneakers on the streets is much more dressed up. From the ankles up, fans of this trend look sleek and polished, wearing the most stylish of workwear. As for their feet however, they have ditched the pumps and opted for a casual tennis shoe which costs no more than $100 (examples of this look are shown above). Even those who refuse to partake in this movement themselves cannot deny that it is certainly unique, undoubtedly comfortable, and very cost-effective.

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Luxury, Available to Own: Prada, Chanel, Valentino

For those of you label-lovers with bigger budgets, designers such as Prada, Chanel, and Valentino are releasing their own basic tennis shoes. Many high-end labels have featured various types of sneakers in the past, but the ones in the current collections are more casual than ever. If you love the look of the trend but want to rock a more high fashion version, these designer kicks are a perfect solution for you.

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The Runways: Dior, Chanel

This year’s runway shows definitely took the sneaker trend to new heights. Chanel and Dior featured embellished sneakers with bold colors, mixed fabrics, and sequins. These shoes may not be the ones you would reach for in your closet for everyday wear, but they certainly make a statement. At Chanel’s Fall 2014 show, Cara Delevingne even stepped out on the runway in a couture wedding gown worn with sneakers. With Karl Lagerfeld leading the way, the trend is getting serious. The couture kicks are going for price tags in the quadruple digits, and we can’t say we are surprised. Those who opt for these pairs must be seriously committed to the trend, while others with a lower budget can stick to the Nikes. Either way, there is no doubting that sneakers, high-end and low, are one of this year’s hottest trends.

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Chanel finale wedding dress worn with sneakers

-Victoria Monaco for The Untitled Magazine

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