Every fall, college campuses swarm with women wearing all kinds of leather flats, but there are always a select few brave enough to walk across the quad in stilettos. Those risk-takers might look great, but who can realistically trek to class in high heels? There's a different breed of shoe popping up in storefronts around Los Angeles that could prove the perfect solution. The high-top wedge sneaker is a heel and sport shoe hybrid, providing a middle ground for chic tomboys and girlie-girls who love their heels.
"I always wanted to be able to wear sneakers and create a whole cool tomboyish look, but I couldn't seem to achieve that with plain old high-tops," says designer Monika Chiang, who has a new line of high-top wedge sneakers. "When I created my high-tops, I added a hidden wedge to give the leg a longer look and a more stylish feel."
The color combinations, materials and styles of this season's high-top wedge run the gamut. Mesh panels, white leather-cap toes and Velcro are all nods to traditional, sporty sneaks. But with lush suede, metal studs and labels including
Monika Chiang Artemys sneaker in pewter, $385, available at http://www.monikachiang.com.
The metallic leather shines, a throwback to the cool kids of the '80s. "I love incorporating something unexpected like a metallic leather or all-over studs, to give it a bit of attitude," Chiang says.
Corte wedge sneaker in wenge, $428, available at Gregory's Beverly Hills, 147 N. Robertson Blvd.
The simple Velcro straps and rich color palette make this style a fall staple to wear with coats and skinny jeans.
Koolaburra Kenny sneaker wedge in red, $239, available at http://www.koolaburra.com beginning in September.
This deep red sneaker with silver studs makes a bold statement and can easily transition from day to night.
Ash Eagle nappa leather sneaker, $225, available at http://www.ashfootwearusa.com and
The style is a sort of dressed-up version of a
See by Chloe lace-up wedge sneaker in gaucho rust, $375, available at http://www.neimanmarcus.com.
If you're looking to try out the trend without screaming "I'm wearing sneaks," the See by Chloe lace-ups make a good starting point. The soft rust color and smooth lines are subtle but still fun.