iStyle: Back on the train gang with fashionable footwear

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Trainers are no longer just for the track, as sporty shoes have graduated to the most stylish of settings, says Lee Holmes

There’s no escaping the simple fact that what you wear on your feet is important – your shoes need to make the right impression.

However, there’s now an ever-increasing stylish fraternity who would much prefer to wear a sports shoe rather than, say, a traditional brogue. And, as luck would have it, there’s also a swell in the number of designers who not only feel the same way but who have helped elevate the humble training shoe to fashionable footwear.

Raf Simons can be partially held responsible for this shift,  having pushed for the running shoe to be recognised as acceptable everyday foot attire for seasons; his ongoing collaboration with sportswear label Adidas continues to go from strength to strength, with this autumn’s flash take on sportily styled footwear one of his best yet.

Retailer Matchesfashion.com will also this month open a designer trainer installation at its Marylebone town house store, where customers can purchase a selection of trainers signed by designers such as Ami and Lanvin. While over at Selfridges, the space dedicated to designer trainers is filled with the sound of ringing tills. So while many may well balk at the cost of buying into this fancy training shoe fad, remember that it’s each to their own; for those whose passion for luxury sportswear shows no sign of abating, these designers collaborating is fashion nirvana.

How far from the track the trainer can go is still open to some debate. The fashion jury is still out when it comes to wearing a pair with a suit, no matter what Lucas Ossendrijver’s vision for the Lanvin man is this season. It looks odd. And it looks odd in the way that you’ve mistakenly left your  shoes at the gym. Perhaps then, such sporting pleasures are best coupled with casual wear. Matchesfashion.com trainer installation event takes place 27-28 September

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