As the colder months come to an end, many (including us at Highsnobiety) are preparing to stash their Timbs and dig into the closet to bring out some of the summer options that have been neglected all winter.
To make sure you're properly laced up for summer, we hit up some of our friends in the industry to provide some recommendations around summer trends. Below, we hear from Brendan Denault of Canadian retailer Livestock, Luke Matthews at UK-based chain size?, Federico Barassi from online luxury retailer SSENSE, and Erik Fagerlind from European retailer Sneakersnstuff.
Take in their thoughts on summer footwear, then head to Highsnobiety's curated shopping channel What Drops Now to see more of our favorite releases.
What new models from Nike and adidas are you expecting to see a lot of this summer?
Brendan Denault, Livestock: For adidas, the Climacool is something a few of us are looking forward to seeing at the shop, along with more iterations of classics like the Samba and Campus.
For Nike, it would have to be the new VaporMax. The silhouette looks pretty cool, and it's an interesting new model with that full Air outsole - it could be one that sticks around for a while. Another one we are looking forward to seeing again would be the inline Air Woven - that will be a summer staple. We’re also interested to see what NikeLab does in the coming months.
Other than that, late in the summer we got some cool footwear coming from Arc'teryx.
Luke Matthews, size?: Air Max is back where it belongs and I can see it staying there for the foreseeable future too. The return of the Air Max 97, the original shape of the Air Max 1 and the introduction of the VaporMax has teed up the remainder of the year perfectly.
From adidas, all things Boost; both the Pure Boost and the Ultra Boost continue to set the bar for comfort and wearability. The NMD franchise is also showing no sign of slowing down as adidas are set to drop new iterations on the R1, R2 and City Sock.
Federico Barassi, SSENSE: For Summer 2017, the Boost sole from adidas continues to dominate, whether it’s the NMD, a reinvented Stan Smith, or a Y-3 sneaker, everyone will be wearing some form of the Boost sole this summer.
I’m also expecting to see a lot of people wearing sneakers from the new Pharrell Williams and adidas Originals collaboration, and the EQT in new technologies, like a Primeknit version.
Erik Fagerlind, Sneakersnstuff: Ok, so this could be a trick question. These days, brands are pretty strict on embargoes on what we can say is coming and not. So, the best and what I think we will see the most of are styles I am not allowed to talk about yet. But I can tell you that adidas are for sure riding the Boost wave this year too. I have seen so many great things in the pipeline.
Nike are not the brand to sit tight and let adidas sweep in with all the new gear to take over, and we just saw how determined they were with the Nike Air VaporMax. But I am excited to see what they will do to the new Vaporfly Elite and Zoom Vaporfly 4%. And then of course, all the reshaped Air Max 1s to come, and the tribute to the Air Force 1.
Name some under-the-radar brands or models that your shop will be offering when the weather gets better.
Brendan Denault: Malibu sandals will be coming in shortly, looking forward to those. For apparel, I would say to look for new arrivals from Powers, Braindead, and Alltimers. Last but not least, we happily welcomed Fucking Awesome back into our stores again.
Luke Matthews: An all-year favorite of ours at size? is the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star 70. This season we’ve reactivated some of the key essential colors from previous seasons, including Rose, Sunflower and Jade.
Alongside those, you’ll start to see more of our vintage running category across a vast array of brands. Diadora’s Camaro, New Balance’s 420 and Saucony’s Jazz OG all return and run parallel to the iconic runners that have paved the way to those that we see on our shelves today.
Federico Barassi: Aprix is a new sneaker brand that you’ll be seeing soon at SSENSE. The brand is a project by Noah creative director Brendon Babenzien, bringing a modern twist to classic sneaker silhouettes with original colorways, like a pink and burgundy combo, also using high quality suede and canvas materials.
We’ll also be stocking the Alyx and Vans collaboration, which we’re very excited about. The three models are a cool take on the classic Vans sneaker design, which are a staple in everyone’s closet now, but these ones feature printed logos on the soles and leather uppers in white and silver.
Erik Fagerlind: When it comes to good shoes, right now is a really good time. Hype drives the market for sure, but if you really like sneakers, there is something for everyone. Brands like Karhu, New Balance, ASICS, Saucony, and Brandblack are all doing a good job to try to catch up with the major league brands. And that is the beauty of sneakers - the variation. There is something for everyone.
If you want to see the most forward-thinking basketball/lifestyle shoe, then Brandblack is for you. If you are looking for true heritage, and good authentic stories - Karhu is your brand. If you are looking for a classic low-cut vulcanized shoe - Vans is there for you. For future tech with a fashion twist, Reebok's Pump Supreme is a slept-on style if you ask me. But as I said, there is something for everyone.
What will you personally be rocking this summer?
Brendan Denault: "Wild Mango" All Star 70s, so good.
Luke Matthews: A rotation of adidas Originals Campus 80s, Nike’s Sock Racer and a fresh pair of Chuck 70s.
Federico Barassi: I’ll be wearing all of the new models from Balenciaga, like the sock sneakers and the new Triple-S probably every day. I’ll also definitely be stocking up on the new adidas Originals x Raf Simons Ozweego 3. I love the new colorways Raf designed for his FW17 collection.
Erik Fagerlind: I have always been a fan of the here-and-now, as well as the future. I don't mind a good execution of something from the past. But you'll see me in Ultra Boost, Pure Boost, NMD, Air Pegasus, Zoom Vaporfly, Reebok Pump Supreme and similar.
Talk about some sneaker releases that you’re personally looking forward to.
Brendan Denault: Personally looking forward to more 70s Cons, seeing the upcoming Parley x adidas release, and what Suicoke has to offer.
Luke Matthews: I’m super excited to see Nike’s Bonafide introduced to the market. Aggressive basketball styles are seeing even more of a resurgence over the last year or so, with the various Uptempo silhouettes proving that the appetite is still there for something a little bit different.
Federico Barassi: Some releases I’m looking forward to are the new models from Balenciaga and the next Vetements x Reebok sneaker. The Balenciaga Triple-S model is innovative in its design because they have the appearance of a heavy sneaker, but are surprisingly made of highly lightweight materials, which is ideal for the summer months.
Erik Fagerlind: Unfortunately, I'm not allowed to share what I am most excited about. But there are so many great things coming out in April and May, I can hardly wait. Let's just say that for me, being a fan of what's next - I was excited when adidas started to mix lifestyle and function in the Ultra Boost. I was happy to see that it landed well in the market. And now I am very excited to see Nike and adidas in a competition on who will make the best looking functional sneakers.
Ending on a fun note, what summertime activity in your city are you most looking forward to?
Brendan Denault: Playing basketball outside again. This winter in Vancouver has been crazy, I can’t remember last time we had this much snow. Also BBQing and hanging at parks or beaches, Third beach, Crab park. Also looking forward to getting out of the city, road tripping to the Okanagan, or weekend trips to Pemberton.
Luke Matthews: I grew up on the seaside so you can’t beat a walk along the beach with fresh fish and chips wrapped in newspaper followed by an hour on the arcades.
Federico Barassi: In Montreal it’s so cold in the winter that we end up hibernating inside for months on end. I’m just looking forward to being outside, walking around, taking in the nice weather, and grabbing coffee and hanging out in the parks.
Erik Fagerlind: I'm in Stockholm. Stockholm is a city surrounded by water. So the best thing to do when the weather is right is to hit the sea. You could either do it right in the middle of the city - or catch a boat ride and hit the water just an hour or so outside. Both two amazing things to be doing in summer.
Now make sure to check out more predictions for this summer's biggest sneakers for girls.