Targeting the next generation high-value “millennial movement”, every fashion house from Berluti to Balenciaga has adopted the sportswear trend, moving into luxury sneakers as the entry point for luxury.
Gone are the days of the wear-once-throw-away mentality, and now as social media spreads world-wide influence, many sneaker silhouettes are becoming cult goods. If you’re struggling to work out which direction to take, slide your feet into ICON’s guide to the best luxury sneakers on the market. Beware however, you may max out your credit card without some will power.
We’ll start with the obvious and go straight to the cult leader in trend-based luxury goods, Gucci. Taking part in the embroidery take-off, the Italian fashion house made a statement with its original ’70s white Ace sneakers, featuring the bee or snake emblem. Following the release of the “dad sneaker” in the past 12 months.
Gucci Ace Watersnake-Trimmed Embroidered Leather Sneakers / $785 AUD SHOP NOW
Gucci Rhyton Logo-Print Leather Sneakers / $1,071 AUD SHOP NOW
Gucci JBG Webbing-Trimmed Leather And Suede Sneakers / $808 AUD SHOP NOW
Most recently seen on Ryan Reynolds, Swedish brand Axel Arigato do the best variations of the classic tennis shoe. From the hi-top to the low-top, simplicity, design, and ultimate quality meets in the best possible way. No matter what your style, everyone can agree on the Axel Arigato.
A front runner in the sneaker movement, this historical brand is immersing sneakers in futurism. Both the Triple S and Speed sock sneakers have become the most iconic footwear styles this year. Again, taking on the “dad sneaker” trend has proven to pay off for Balenciaga, and when comfort is involved, why would you say no to the hype?
Balenciaga Triple S Mesh, Suede And Leather Sneakers / $1,039 AUD SHOP NOW
Balenciaga Speed Sock Stretch-Knit Slip-On Sneakers / $806 AUD SHOP NOW
Balenciaga Race Runner Leather, Neoprene, Suede And Mesh Sneakers / $740 AUD SHOP NOW
Common Projects does the tennis shoe so well, that the simple addition of the gold branding on the heel- with each unique one signifying the colour, code and size of the shoe – has made this brand an American-Italian cult buy. Sleek, clean and oh so easy on the eye, Common projects is loved by the likes of Drake and Alexander Skarsgard, which is just a bonus.
Common Projects Original Achilles Leather High-Top Sneakers / $545 AUD SHOP NOW
Common Projects Achilles Retro Leather Sneakers / $564 AUD SHOP NOW
Common Projects Original Achilles Full-Grain Leather Sneakers / $484 AUD SHOP NOW
Best known for his cashmere goods and quality tailoring, name-sake brand Brunello Cucinelli puts the “retro” in “retro sneakers”. We recommend treating these as if they were you child, to keep them in exemplary condition. Hand-milled, made in Italy, 100% leather, and with each style featuring intricate detailing, this is the definition of luxury. And you can buy them with a good conscious as Brunello donates 20% of his profits to charity.
Brunello Cucinelli Crono Suede And Full-Grain Leather Sneakers / $1,510 AUD SHOP NOW
Brunello Cucinelli Icaro II Full-Grain Leather, Nubuck And Suede Sneakers / $1,456 AUD SHOP NOW
Brunello Cucinelli Leather-Trimmed Nubuck Sneakers / $1,111 AUD SHOP NOW
After AMI founder Alexandre Matiussi worked for the likes of Marc Jacobs, Dior and Givenchy, he began his own high-end streetwear brand, and its just as epic as his predecessors. From a take on the classic court shoe to the latest in chunky sneakers, Matisussi puts his own preppy and refined spin on trending looks.
When you think of Saint Laurent, it usually involves leather jackets, boots and grunge wear. The side you may not be aware of is its more relaxed style – most commonly found in the form of sneakers. Equally edgy yet classic, the French fashion house offer a range of styles, but the most popular? Its classic white court shoe.
Berluti’s ethos is that ‘you cannot be elegant if you are not comfortable and well-shod.’ This is clearly seen in its sneakers range. Refined and elegant, the Parisian brand combines the look of the timeless oxford or loafer to the sneaker silhouette – essentially a commuters dream. Made from Italian leather and technical qualities like memory-foam insoles and anti-slip notched soles, these shoes are more functional then they look.
Berluti Fast Track Leather Brogue Sneakers / $1,665 AUD SHOP NOW
Berluti Run Track Torino Leather, Suede And Nylon Sneakers / $1,508 AUD SHOP NOW
Berluti Outline Leather Sneakers / $1,381 AUD SHOP NOW
Cant quite get away with wearing standard sneakers to the office? John Lobb has you covered for leather refined sneakers. With styles reminiscent to the retro bowling alley shoes and more simple silhouettes, attention to detail and Italian craftsmanship is top notch.
Another Italian shoe brand known for its exceptional oxfords and brogues, Grenson also does sneakers with their own distinct style. A rendition on the ’70s tennis shoe with its own luxurious twist, each style comes in quality leather or suede, still lending an effortless throwback vibe – and the price is pretty attractive to.
Utilitarian and futurism in Prada’s line of sneakers. Forward thinking design is at the forefront of the Italian label and in a range of extra embellishments, colours and shapes, Prada puts its best foot forward in its sneakers.