A new direction for sneakerheads
For the past decade, sneakers have dominated the shoe game, surpassing traditional silhouettes to take the top spot on most-popular and in demand on the table. Whilst the hype beast and sneakerhead culture act as the driving force in the market, recent shows at Prada, Alyx, Dries Van Noten, and many more previewed SS21 collections with a move away from high fashion’s streetwear obsession.
Whilst leading label Off-White has dominated the cornerstone of the market, this move towards soft tailoring acts as a more trustworthy direction of the beginning of the end for sneakers and streetwear. Looking forward, it’s fair to say that we may well be entering a post-sneaker-centric era.
With that in mind, here are a few recommended alternatives to our favourite footwear…
Gucci Horsebit Loafers
PHOTO CREDIT: Gucci
PHOTO CREDIT: @danielsimmons, @joesfmichael_, @kosta_kara
Reimagined from the original 1950s design, the Gucci Horsebit Loafer rests on a chunky rubber lug sole, completing its revived contemporary design. Details of the loafer include painterly rosebuds linings and gold embroidered bees at the heel. First introduced in 1966, Horsebit detailing is seen on the loafer’s upper and pays homage to the house’s equestrian origins.
Dior Explorer Loafer with Dior and Shawn Signature
PHOTO CREDIT: Dior
PHOTO CREDIT: @onlyravene, @t3flon.don
Infusing a classic shoe style with retro California inspiration, the Dior Explorer loafer made its debut as part of Dior Men’s 2020 collection. The partnership with Shawn Stussy quickly became the most anticipated release of the season and marked Shawn’s biggest project since selling his label in 1996. The range features some of his best designs, including reimaginings of the French fashion house’s iconic Saddlebag and Explorer loafer.
Crafted using a sleek black calfskin upper, the slip-on silhouette features a classic lug sole and leather lining with the Dior logo featured on the shoes upper in Stussy’s instantly recognisable signature scrawling.
Balenciaga Lace-Up Derby
PHOTO CREDIT: @Balenciaga
PHOTO CREDIT: @o1ssl
Featuring a chunky low block heel, the Lace Up Derby is the perfect shoe for an elevated appeal. Led by Demna Gvasalia, creative director of Balenciaga and the founder of Vetements, the luxury fashion house has given the classic leather derby shoe an interesting update. Smooth calfskin completes the shoe’s upper which has been designed to feature tone-on-tone laces and an embossed logo.
Filling Pieces’ Waspy Dress Up Loafer
PHOTO CREDIT: @Filling Pieces
PHOTO CREDIT: @yoooucef, @edwardboye, @filingpieces, @grsnn
Constructed from premium polished leather, the Waspy Dress Up from Filling Pieces is the perfect example of sophisticated comfort. Whilst a custom-designed buckle-fastener and soleplate mark the dress shoes most distinctive feature, a LiveTech tread and embossed signature text uniquely complete the label’s latest offering.
Since its release, the Dutch footwear brand has teased updated iterations in their latest ‘Support’ campaign. Drawing inspiration from classic 1930s silhouettes, the latest assortment of footwear will use custom varsity jackets that pay homage to sports and fan culture as well as a handshake aluminium bridge across the shoes upper.
1017 ALYX 9SM
PHOTO CREDIT: @Alyx
PHOTO CREDIT: @onlyravene, @eeeunseokk, @raremarket_official
Opting for leather stack sole in replacement of the lug sole trend, the backless slip-on delivers forward-thinking design and a sense of sophistication. Stand out features of the 1017 Alyx 9SM include a small anodized aluminium buckle embossed with the label’s logo as well as its modern round-toe design.
Prada Monolith Boots
PHOTO CREDIT: Prada
PHOTO CREDIT: @mvb, @threadsstyling, @gallucks
First unveiled as part of the label’s AW19 collection, Prada’s Monolith boots have redefined the image of military-inspired footwear. Distinguished by dramatically lugged rubber soles, the mid-calf height boots stand out feature includes the removable zipped pouch which has been embellished with a logo plaque on a buckled strap.