Has The Sneaker-Wedge Trend Gone Too Far?



adidas-embedPhoto: Courtesy of Adidas.
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As a former sneakerhead, I'm way on board with the fashionable-footwear trend. High-tops and low-profile kicks in a bunch of kooky color combos and coordinating laces (sometimes weaved to resemble a chessboard!) were on daily rotation back in high school, and these days, I'm known to bust out an old pair or two on the weekends. So, when Isabel Marant showed wedge kicks in her spring '12 collection, I scoffed at the concept of "sneaky sneakers" — coined by a former colleague and patent pending — and thought it was the silliest thing in the world. But, two years after Marant's heeled stepper made its debut, the silhouette is still insanely popular, and I've switched camps to pro-sneaky-sneaker. Sigh.

You see, as much as I try to roll my eyes at wedge sneakers, it's so hard to ignore that functional-and-fashionable factor. And, I'm not the only one who feels this way. Athletic brands have taken notice of the style's popularity and jumped on the bandwagon, creating heeled versions of their beloved, instantly recognizable kicks. I still haven't decided if that's a good thing.

After all, it's odd to see that sneakers similar to what I wore in high school are turning into a fashion fixture. Shell toes were my go-tos, and now they're what street-style photogs look for during Fashion Week? Maybe I should've kept more of them. But, as much as I complain about those three extra inches of height on a pair of high-tops, I can't deny that the style looks cool and modern — even though, to me, it borders on try-too-hard territory.

And, since I'm being real with you, I guess I should come clean and admit that I bought a pair of sneaker wedges as I was writing this story. Of course, the sneakerhead in me is already planning an epic side-eye for when the shoes come in, but the fashion person in me is already figuring out the perfect outfit to wear with them. So, maybe it's a good thing that store has a great return policy.


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