At the end of 2019 I spoke to some leading trainer experts, including Diadora CEO, Enrico Polegato as well as Nia Jones, co-founder and creative director of new sustainable sneaker brand Good News, on what kind of sneakers we’d see everywhere in 2020.
Before this year, trainer trends arguably fell in to one of two categories. Either they were very much on the "ugly" oversized sneaker side of things with the high street, as well as designers, continuing to push out bold-style trainers. Or, they fell into the more classic-style sneakers—Vejas sustainable trainers have been one of the shoes I spotted the most over 2019, with not only celebrities such as Emma Watson and Meghan Markle wearing them but a host of influencers.
So what about 2020's sneaker trends? Well, these predictions were all made well before the pandemic and we spent a lot of our time inside, and daily walks were our only form of outing. While things have definitely shifted since March, the need for comfy and easy-to-walk-in shoes remains. You need only see the increase in bike sales and the plethora of people in our parks and countryside to understand that.
That said, I very much believe that the predictions from over six months ago remain. For example sustainability is at the forefront of our minds and trainers like Veja will continue to be poplar. However, for this piece I also spoke to global fashion search platform Lyst, analysed the 2020 runway trends and looked at what our fashion friends are wearing on Instagram. From all this, I can see there are four main trainer styles that are big this year so far. Keep scrolling to find out what they are...
Thanks to the prevalence of Vejas' classic sneaker styles, as well as the emergence of nu-minimalism, there is no doubt that the pared-back sneaker is huge in 2020. Of course, the real iconic version is now Adidas's Stan Smiths sneaker, so beloved by former Céline creative director Phoebe Philo. Stella McCartney created her own minimal sneaker for spring/summer 2020 and it's exactly the right kind for wearing with camel-coloured or grey suit trousers.
Enrico agreed: "In fashion, everything makes a comeback and right now it's the turn of retro sneakers. While chunky ugly fashion silhouettes have dominated for the past few seasons, 2020 will see a return to nostalgic models of the past: classic sneaks, ‘80s runners and tennis shoes. Next year will be a new golden era for slimmer, lighter eighties retro silhouettes. I’m sure they will hit the shelves of all sorts of retailers. The archives are just a treasure trove of them."
SHOP THE SNEAKERS
Diadora Game Charm (£60)
Novesta Star Master Trainers (£49)
Good News Organic Cotton-Canvas Sneakers (£110)
Veja Esplar Suede-Trimmed Leather Sneakers (£90)
Superga 2750 Classic Canvas Plimsolls in White (£50)
Platform soles are not new. In 2018 and 2019 we saw the likes of Gucci, Ganni and Fila creating chunky, reminiscent-of-the-Spice-Girls-style, oversized sneakers. While there are fewer of these over-the-top trainers, 2020 sneakers are holding on to the chunky sole. The proof? For starters Lyst, in its round up of the year, revealed that Alexander McQueen's platform-soled sneakers were searched for every two minutes. Plus, I saw Yasmin Sewell wearing these sneakers during London Fashion Week and she's always a good yard stick for trends to come.
SHOP THE SNEAKERS
Alexander McQueen Raised-Sole Low-Top Leather Trainers (£360)
Miu Miu Leather Flatform Sneakers (£550)
Prada Leather Platform Sneakers (£515)
Reebok Classic Leather Trainers in White (£65)
The chunky, oversized "ugly" sneakers have definitely taken a hit on the popularity front in 2020. On the spring/summer 2020 runways of both Balenciaga and Gucci, there were fluorescent sneakers that while "big" in colour were more pared back in style—more like a classic running shoe with bold hues. "Dad shoes," confirmed Enrico, "will also continue in 2020, it’s all about nostalgic throwbacks from the ‘80s where simplicity is key."
Similarly, Nia from Good News revealed that the contemporary take on 2020's sneaker trends will be a "fluorescent effect or contrasting tones".
SHOP THE SNEAKERS
Good News Ace Ombré Organic Cotton-Canvas Sneakers (£33)
Adidas Falcon (£75)
Adidas Temper Run (£71)
Gucci Ultrapace Mid-Top Sneaker (£665)
According to Lyst’s Index for the first quarter of 2020, “demand for New Balance sneakers has been growing worldwide in terms of both searches and sales. With endorsements by the likes of Kate Middleton, Rihanna and model Kaia Gerber, page views for the brand have increased 41% quarter-on-quarter”. And boy, have we seen a lot of New Balance sneakers around. But it's not just the aforementioned trainers that are popular—there are also other classic vintage styles that are making a come back.
New Balance Made in US 990v5 (£180)
SHOP THE SNEAKERS
Nike Daybreak SP Faux Suede and Ripstop Sneakers (£90)
Reebok Club C 1985 TV Leather Sneakers (£65)
Adidas Originals Classic Leather Trainers in White (£70)
Next up, the biggest summer 2020 fashion trends to know.
This piece was published at an earlier date and has since been updated.
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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