With a backlog of nuptials from the past year to get through, it’s very likely that your summer will be full of weddings. Hence why we’re here and you’re reading this. You’ve been invited to a summer wedding and you’re wondering whether you can get away with wearing sneakers. Don’t worry, we’ve got you.
Before we go in-depth on some of the best summer wedding sneakers we need to iron out some social responsibility. Not all male wedding guests are suit wearers. Not all wedding guests feel comfortable in tailoring, especially in summer. But, let’s be clear. We’re not advocating wearing sneakers to a wedding unless you are quite sure it is going to be acceptable. You have to consider the location, setting and dress code. You also have to consider that there are sneakers then there are sneakers. You don’t want your ordinary off-the-shelf sneakers that you’ve been wearing all year long. You need a box-fresh pair and you need to make a statement.
Wearing sneakers is not a cop-out. Just look at how popular they have become in a modern man’s wardrobe. They’re prized possessions and many of us value them more highly than dress shoes. Which is why a summer wedding and the right sneaker is a match made in heaven. Think about it. It’s much easier and more imaginative to swap out a suit-and-tie for a lightweight collared shirt, unstructured blazer and a tailored trouser. The lightweight fabrics and more relaxed shapes will act as the perfect complement to your choice of wedding sneaker. It’s smart but casual.
Now that we’ve got the details out the way, it’s up to you to pick your favourite pair of wedding sneakers from our top eight below.
You will have seen these white rimmed minimalist sneakers from JAK worn with suits before because the modern one-inch low-top sneaker has become the default shoe of choice for anyone who is used to wearing black leather shoes in a formal setting. The sneakers are by no means traditional and they are by no means over-the-top in the way a lot of premium designer sneakers are. They are more of a sneaker hybrid, an example of the understated luxe sneaker with its plain leather uppers, shock proof inner sole and cotton laces.
Sleek and simple, these Portuguese-made sneakers from minimalist footwear label Uniform Standard will serve to complement rather than detract from your wedding attire. The premium Italian nubuck leather uppers adds an air of sophistication while the easy-to-wear earth hue will work a treat when paired with other neutral shades like beige and navy. What truly wins us over, however, is the fact that they're made using recycled materials, including a 100% recycled moulded footbed covered with smooth Italian calf leather and a recycled cellulose insole board. Eco-friendly footwear at its most stylish.
Amsterdam-based footwear brand ETQ Amsterdam is one of the first on our list for premium leather sneakers that fuse unfussy aesthetics with top notch – and sustainable – construction. We're big fans of the brand's signature court sneakers – its bestselling LT 01 model – which is made from ultra-soft, metal free tanned nappa leather with extra padding for ultimate comfort. So you can dance the night away with ease and enjoyment.
White sneakers are a failsafe classic, thanks to their potential to transcend seasons and trends, as well as occasions. This iteration of Axel Arigato's signature Clean 90 sneakers will become your year-round go-to: the minimalist silhouette, clean colourway and pared-back detailing will look great with anything from a deconstructed blazer and tailored trousers to jeans and an overshirt. Your smart-casual style saviour.
When it comes to rocking sneakers at a summer wedding, we say the simpler the better. But simple doesn't have to mean boring, as evidenced by these meticulously handcrafted Velasca trainers. Made in Montegranaro, Italy from smooth calfskin leather with a sturdy rubber sole, their top notch craftsmanship can be seen and felt. The clean, all-white colourway lends itself perfectly to complementing a lightweight linen suit – try one in a light, natural colour like sand, sage green or pale pink.
Hand stitched and lasted in Marche, Italy using full grain calfskin leather and durable yet lightweight Margom outsoles, these trainers from Oliver Cabell are made to last, so they'll see you through a full weekend of wedding antics – whatever that may entail – and beyond. The luxurious chocolate hue will perfectly complement a crisp white shirt and lightweight tailoring in neutral hues.
Alongside the resurgence of suede and the reappearance of the Cuban collar shirt, one of the most familiar sights over the past few years has been the unmistakable all-white outline of the Common Projects Achilles Low Sneaker. But it would be wrong to just think of the Common Projects sneaker as just a shoe you wear through the week. The premium leather uppers are of such high-quality that they help the Achilles Low toe the line between smart and casual. Which basically means they won’t look out of place in a summer wedding. Especially if you allow the pristine white sneaker to blaze a trail beneath an unstructured navy jacket and a pair of coordinating cotton trousers.
What are weddings for, if not a bit of fun? Feel free to experiment and eschew tradition for shoes with a bit more character – like these grape-coloured trainers from Scandi sneaker label North-89. They're ideal for a wedding in the summer months thanks to their lightweight, breathable construction with the use of cotton mesh and perforated leather. Offset the bold hue with tailored separates in pared-back silhouettes and understated shades.
Read our ultimate guide to men's trainers for our breakdown of different styles of sneakers.
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