The Trekki Sandals
Never say never. It's one of the golden rules of fashion, and yet each and every one of us has - at some stage - said "no way, I would NEVER wear that!", before deciding it's an absolute must-have just a season later. This unexpected change of heart is exactly what has happened with the hiking sandal trend, aka the trekking or dad sandal, a style that is quickly becoming this season's most sought-after must-have.
Riding the normcore wave, with the addition of a lockdown vibe that has seen sales of pool sliders explode, hiking sandals seem to have a very bright future ahead. Yes, the general consensus is that these are UGLY shoes. Yes, they've been around a fair while. And no, they were never intended to be worn in the city… but surely this is exactly why they're so on trend today. Because they break the fashion codes. Think of them as a summer version of winter's dad sneaker trend. Like lots of recent fashion, they had their moment of glory in the 90s, before completely falling off the fashion radar. Despite Prada's bold attempt to revive them in Spring/Summer 2014, it wasn't until Summer 2019 that the public began to get on board, with this season's looks finally embracing the trend. To cut a long story short, the practical sandals your dad wears on holiday have become an unexpected object of desire. And designers are pulling out all the stops, adapting the trend with their little touch of luxury.
From Chanel to Off White via Marni, Balenciaga and Isabel Marant, designers are scrambling to deliver their own stylish take on the humble hiking shoe. Functionality blends with minimalist lines for a look that's both sleek and chic, ticking all the boxes for that “less is more” trend. The key to success lies in the colour, the choice of materials and the thickness of the sole. Loeffler Randall brings us a denim version that's elegant, comfortable and bang on-trend, very close to the original design. Stella McCartney, on the other hand, opts to mix things up a bit, with a white notched rubber sole and contrasting raffia espadrille section for a sporty-riviera look. Then comes Toga Pulla, where every detail counts. From the black notched sole to the smooth glossy leather and metallic hardware, nothing is left to chance. Meanwhile, at Off White, minimalism is key. Both monochrome and mono-material, it's a daringly simple look. In the same vein, but with a diametrically opposite effect, MM6 Maison Margiela brings us shiny white synthetic leather with oversized velcro straps on a super-chunky rubber sole. Dad vibes guaranteed! In a slightly more conventional but timeless design, Marni opts for the sophistication of leather with the iconic Fussbetts. If we were to describe the perfect sandals, it would be these. The combination of flat rubber sole, golden buckles and shiny crocodile calfskin makes them impossible to resist. Isabel Marant reinvents the hiking sandal with two contrasting styles. First, the French designer offers a boho take on the hiking look with her Loreco sandals. Like climbing knots, the cords are braided on top of the foot, lacing and crossing around the ankle, mixing & matching colours, patterns and materials. Then she plays the colour block card with her Enador shoes, with pink leather ties and black soles.
Worn with shorts, a floaty jumpsuit or a little dress, dad sandals are the sartorial statement that all your summer outfits need.
Sportmax, Spring/Summer 2020