Bold sneakers not meant to sneak
The souped-up, blinged-out designer high-top is all the rage these days, a sporty trend in casual footwear that has been building for a while. Two years ago, we reported on "hybrid boots" -- work boots, hiking boots and chukkas that designers made hip by adding wedge heels and glitzy trim. It was only a matter of time before they got down with high-tops. Authentic high-tops actually worn in sports tend to be more of a guy thing, but now women adopted these styles to complement skinny jeans and leggings.
Nine West doesn't shout -- it "Whispers," $225, in green, pewter or light gray; at Nine West stores and ninewest.com.
Oyster Bay natives (and brothers) Jensen and Jordan Adoni's new Modern Vice collection for men and women incorporates Italian leathers and exotic skins (rattlesnake, python). Their women's Mickie Hidden Wedge high top, $250; at Harry's and Forecast Footwear, Manhattan, and modernvice.com.
Zebra stripes counter the familiar triple-stripe motif on the adidas women's Decade OG, $95; at Extra Butter, Rockville Centre, and extrabutterny.com.
Alejandro Ingelmo's Tron, $475, is the label's most coveted style, and why not, with that space-age styling, thick foam collar and inky black patent leather; at Alejandro Ingelmo, Manhattan, and alejandroingelmo.com.
We love the sexy, sweeping curves in this Guess Huxley wedge sneaker, $120, in Guess stores and guess.com.
You can kick it old school with these Coach Callahan sneakers, $198, which exude a classy, retro vibe thanks to the tasseled laces and pebble-grained leather in paintbox colors; at select Macy's stores and macys.com.
ASOS leather flatform high tops, originally about $149, now $70.36; at us.asos.com.
Tory Burch dreamed up a high top with a silhouette all her own thanks to toasty shearling and a leather/flannel upper, $275; at saks.com.
Princess Vera Wang's wedge sneakers, originally $84.99, now $50.99; at select Kohl's stores and kohls.com.
Skechers lets girls get in on the high-top hijinks, with their spangly hot-pink sequined Shuffles Bizzy Bunch, $55, in toddler and youth sizes; at piperlime.com.
Designers take high tops to new heights, with Be & D's Brightlight high tops, $128, with a neon blue (or red) shoe pattern, and grosgrain laces; at shopbop.com.
Ash Lace Up Wedge Sneakers. Cool, $250, in plush suede; at select Bloomingdale's stores and bloomingdales.com.
The “Ash High Top Sneakers — Victim," $225, have a lot that appeals (except maybe that weird name); at select Bloomingdale's stores and bloomingdales.com.
The first high-tops, released in 1947 by Converse, came in black and white canvas, or black leather, and were the shoe of choice on the basketball court till brands such as Nike and adidas started offering more technologically advanced kicks in the 1970s. The brand might have died out were it not for rockers such as Sid Vicious and The Ramones, who adopted the humble high-top. Today's versions (like this Converse Jack Purcell Johnny High-Top, $110 at saks.com) have morphed from jock to rock — once hot on the court, they're now cool all over town.
Alejandro Ingelmo's Josh sneaker, $795, flaunts a flounce of luxe beaver fur; at Alejandro Ingelmo, Manhattan, and alejandroingelmo.com.
For a somewhat more affordable option, try American Eagle Outfitters' AEO Hidden Wedge sneaker, $79.95; exclusively at ae.com.
Nike's women's Dunk Sky Hi, $120, a classic Dunk with hidden wedge; at Extra Butter, Rockville Centre, and extrabutterny.com.
Rebecca Taylor's Olympia high top, $295, boasts a hidden wedge concealed by a sleek leopard print; at bloomingdales.com.
Koolaburra's Charlie wedge sneaker, $199, with perforated leather, metallic snakeskin and a thick Velcro strap, comes in black, coffee or nude (here), and is just one example of the line's holiday platform sneaker collection; at koolaburra.com.
Giuseppe Zanotti's colorblock sneakers in suede and leather, $725, boast zipper accents and a buttery-soft feel; at saks.com.