Women's Fashion | The Reconnoisseur

The shoes that have been sneaking into the fashion spotlight

Stylish trainers that take the strain out of modern life

The shoes that have been sneaking into the fashion spotlight

May 04 2010
Jenny Dalton

I’ve always liked the idea of wearing basketball-type trainers, and indeed had a flirtation with bright purple high-top Converse shoes at university. But I’ve never found them comfortable or supportive enough for the demands of modern life.

Then a few seasons ago I discovered Ash trainers in an online shop – an Italian stealth brand created by designer Patrick Ithier in 2001. Last summer, when I met up with a stylist friend I hadn’t seen for a year, I noticed that she was wearing a pair too, and I realised that perhaps they weren’t the “secret” I thought they were. Now of course there’s a Marylebone High Street flagship store and the word is well and truly out.

I now buy a couple of pairs every season, usually in leather or suede with embossing or studding details. Because they’re leather-lined, well padded, and extremely well made (in Italy), they are slipper-comfortable, but substantial enough for days of walking around town. Also, because they're not too horribly trendy (though still with nods to current trends), they’re smart enough – paired with a trouser suit – for work appointments.

This season’s look is principally about denim – which is again a bit too studenty for me. I do however like the Volcan white version (pictured, £105) of their signature style.

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Shoes