The Fashion Wink: Wedge Sneakers

By Liz Olsen April 9, 2013 01:21 PM
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The Fashion Wink: Wedge Sneakers

This gym-gone-chic footwear trend has caught Hollywood celebs and fashionistas by storm. Sporty was big on the runways this spring, and this wedge captures everything we love about that look. You get a chunky heel with sneaker comfort, and styling that goes from edgy to casual. Worn with skinny jeans, leggings, shorts, or even a flirty skirt (long or short) and you’ve got a look with a lot of street cred.

According to Glamour, “Isabel Marant kicked off the trend a few seasons ago with her drool-worthy futuristic-looking Bekket style, and as a result, they’ve been spotted on everyone from Miranda Kerr to Alicia Keys to Kate Bosworth.” Now practically every shoe brand is getting into the wedge action. Is it for you?

Kate Bosworth (l), Miranda Kerr (r)

Forget about the height, it’s the price point that’s not for the faint of heart. These kicks can range from $40 to over $800 for the high end “designer” names, and I’m not even talking about Gucci or Prada. Casadei has a pair on Polyvore for $885. Adidas has a pair over $400!  If you must follow this trend, then here are the ones you might want to sink your foot and pocket book into:

1.  Ash. There are many classic athletic brands trying this look–Puma, Nike and Reebok to name a few. For my money (unless you are going in the high end Adidas), these brands just don’t make the cut. They’re too basic. They don’t have street flair and if the shoe doesn’t have it, your entire look won’t have it. Enter Ash. Ash is doing this style perfectly. At a decent price point ($195-$280), this brand has many styles and colors pumping up these kicks.

2.  Isabel Marant. These shoes sold out the instant this Parisian queen of casual-cool first made them available. Described as “effortlessly hip with a touch of bohemian chic, her signature trophy jackets, laid-back knits and striking accessories are the uniform of models, fashion editors and style-setters alike.” Celebs like Dakota Fanning, Miranda Kerr, Beyoncé, Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones and Hilary Duff are obsessed with these shoes. Who wouldn’t be? And what does Marant think of all of these wedge copycats? In a recent interview she told Telegraph Fashion, “Everybody who has the wrong one looks quite bitchy, very vulgar, when mine are not at all.”  Well, if you don’t want to look bitchy and vulgar in Marant’s eyes hunt a pair down at Barneys for over $600.

3. See by Chloé. I have long been a fan of the French house that first coined the phrase ready-to-wear (prêt-à-porter). Chloé  and designer Gaby Aghion have always had a decidedly French femininity to their line they describe as “youthful and modern in design, and slightly audacious in spirit.”  See by Chloé began in 2001 to target the younger luxury brand buyer. Their shoes and accessories are fantastic, and no more so than with their High-Top Wedge Sneaker. It comes in tan, tan/cream, black, black/taupe suede and brown.

4.  Adidas Y-3 by Yohji Yamamoto. When this style first came out I wasn’t sure it was from me (I’m told you either love it or hate it), but this Y-3 wedge sneaker was the one that brought me around to the trend. This Tokyo designer for Adidas was inspired by nature and is “designed for the journey.” This wedge will certainly take you wherever you want to go.  The Y-3 Sukita comes in a few different accent colors on crisp white. One of the styles is even on sale now at Zappos for $207 down from $480!

Clockwise from top left: Ash, Marant, Y-3, See by Chloé

For those who don’t want to spend crazy money for this trend, knock-off king Steve Madden does have a few good styles including his “Hilight” Wedge in black for $149.00.

Who does it worst? Rachel Zoe. This Geri Mixed Material Wedge Sneaker tries too hard. Careful, girls, at $295, this shoe could get you from A+ to hot mess in a in the time it takes to say fashion victim.

Rachel Zoe

Don’t overthink this look. If you wear it with a skirt, look at the sweatshirt top Kate Boswith rocks with it.  And if you do dress up black ones for a business casual look with a black skirt, add a jean jacket to play the skirt down a little. And when it doubt, you can’t go wrong with skinny jeans or jean cutoff shorts.