The Kicks Are All Right


In addition to packing essentially everything I own for 9 days of Paris Fashion Week, I made one new purchase: a pair of white Nike SB Dunk High Pros [1]. My theory: pristine optic-white high-tops would, in the blink of an eye, 'pull together' any and all of the denim-and-button-down combos I could muster. A little Yeezy, a little Hedi. Slip 'em on and all of a sudden, you've got an Outfit (but not in that street-style-clown way). However, white shoes come with a lot of responsibility—as does white anything, I guess—with regard to maintenance. (The New York Times once reported that Murphy's Oil Soap and a toothbrush is the best way to keep your white kicks looking fresh. See—this is an issue!) And what's the life expectancy on a pair of these bad boys? Three months? Because 1) Shoes touch the ground, and 2) The ground, particularly in NYC but also in Paris (the French: great at steak; picking up after their dogs, not so much), is disgusting. Fittingly, it POURED on Day 1 of Fashion Week...which, of course, is when I decided to break out my new shoes. But this made up for it: as I mulled around looking for beauty soundbites backstage at Rochas, I spied the models' footwear. They all wore white lace-up wrestling boots [2, 3], protected from scuffs by blue cotton booties (surgical scrubs?). Good one! I considered swiping a pair. Clearly, Rochas designer Marco Zanini had been listening to Nelly's "Air Force Ones", in which the St. Lunatics rap:

Now don't nothing get the hype on first sight like white on whites
Them three-quarters, them lows, they all tight
The only problem, they only good for one night
Cause once you scuff 'em, you fucked up your whole night

—Nick Axelrod

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  • Nat

    I love a good, clean pair of Air Force Ones on a man (as well as a classic throwback to Nelly). It's funny, though, that upon my first visit to Italy I distinctly remember being told that wearing bright white Nike sneakers will make you stick out like a sore thumb as a tourist. However, I think your theory of crisp white Nikes pulling together a denim-and-button-down combo is totally on point!


  • kate moss daily

    I miss wearing sneakers! The only ones I own are Converse, and I do love them, but those are not exactly supportive. I'm glad the fashion world is embracing a sportier option.

  • Alice

    Crisp white Nikes are definitely key to pulling together outfits.
    The only problem is what makes the so desirable: their gorgeous stark whiteness.
    Once the day comes around where science can come up with a way for me to wear white clothing without completely destroying it, I will be very happy to invest in an entirely white wardrobe.
    Until then, it looks like I'm stuck with all the other colors. Or maybe, I can just invest in some of those weird cotton bootie things. I remember seeing them a while back on a repairman who arrived to work on the roof while it was raining. Somehow, they just don't lose their funniness. Though, while they are funny, I suppose they do get the job done.

    Here's to lovely white shoes, that sadly, get so dirty so easily!


  • mlle p

    Ok, call me clueless, but every time I hear about Weezy and Jeezy I think it sounds like some bad old vaudeville team! I know Kanye uses this and some other guys also, but WHAT is it, what does it mean? Or do I even want to know?
    Also, not into the giant sneakers of any color for either sex. No one needs frankenfeet.

  • Sindhu R.

    Air Force Ones are a classic but those sneakers at Rochas might become one too! I would kill for those!