Top 10 Sneakers of 2012 We Wore This Year: Jeff Carvalho

2012 was a big year sneaker wise for my closet and I.  I bought and added more kicks to my collection this year than I had the prior two years combined.  From the unique look of the Flyknit to florals that worked, sneakers were about the only thing on my feet in 2012.

Every shoe on this list was worn by me in 2012 and worn well. Most will look beat and ragged as they should from a year’s wear.

10. Nike APC Dunk Blue High
The A.P.C. blue in suede made this collaborative Nike Dunk High my favorite this Fall. The color cover on much of the gum sole wall was a nice touch. Blue goes with everything. Dunks go with everything – high or low.

09. PUMA by Hussein Chalayan Haast in Anthracite/Opal Grey
A luxury runner of sorts. The gradient perforated upper in Anthracite”barely-buck” contrasts well against the oversized grey leather tongue on this Hussein Chalayan design. I also love that it is not a PUMA retro but a brand new designed inspired by PUMA heritage.

08. Vans Van Doren Floral
I beat the shit out of these this summer after getting a generous early pair to play around in. The classic Hawaiian floral pattern in red worked for me. My friend Phil loved them as well – so much so that he took them back to Berlin. Go figure.

07. Pro-Keds x Play Clothing Royal CVO Canvas Floral
As I said this summer: “Quite possibly one of the powerhouse floral trainers of 2012. The pattern: unique and bolder than most on the market. The low-top wears well with just about anything, though they get dirty faster than most here. I have beat the shit out of these.”

06. Nike Air Woven Euro 2012 Black/White
The Air Woven. The HTM pairs from a decade ago are holy grail items. I am lucky to own a few inline pairs that did make their way onto shelves in the USA back in the early 200o’s. The Euro 2012 tournament this summer put the Nike Air Woven back on the shelves with these Quickstrike hits. This is my favorite of the colorways.

If I owned the Air Wovens on the Free 3 sole, this listing would be different.

05. Cole Haan Lunargrand Chukka (various)
Cole Haan managed to merge a Nike Lunar sole onto their dress resulting in a  pretty impressive finished product. Fans of the Nike Lunarlon sole, including myself, loved the Cole Haan Lunargrand chukka boots. Here I’m showing the Fragment colorway, but they pretty much all work. Walk or run in them – they will not disappoint.

04. Nike Flyknit Trainer+ Team USA
I was a Nike Flyknit junkie since seeing and hunting down that initial HTM release back in the first quarter of 2012. I purchased almost every colorway of the Trainer+ and was lucky enough to be gifted a pair of the Olympic Team USA edition worn by athletes during podium medaling. I’m grateful for these and have worn mine happily.

03. Converse x Missoni All Star Hi
Missoni and Converse do it again and again. This was my favorite colorway from the duo this year. Another rare high top on this list. Hard to keep clean, but work nicely with various garbs.

02.adidas Matchplay Jim Thompson
A perfect shoe in my mind. The suede black upper on a dotted, discolored white sole is hard to beat. My first wear got them completely soaked during a rain storm downpour. The wet suede on these adidas Matchplay sneakers dried and hardened in a manner that has given them a hard shell look. I only wish I had them in Boston a summer earlier.

01. Nike Free Run+ 3 Black
I am on my second pair of this colorway having burned through the first this past summer. They were my utility kicks for almost everything. Super versatile and adopted pretty quickly by anyone looking for a lightweight, good looking runner. Seeing as my burn rate for the Free Run+ 3 has been one pair every six months, I went ahead and bought triples – I’m serious.

Managing Director N.A.

Jeff Carvalho is Managing Director for Highsnobiety N.A. in New York City. He holds a journalism degree from Northeastern University.

What To Read Next