Sneakers were the footwear of choice on the runways for London Fashion Week Men on Jan.6-8, with designers pairing them with everything from tailoring to streetwear. From emerging designer Kiko Kostadinov’s tie-in with Asics to heritage British shoemaker Grenson, who joined forces with New Balance, here are the best sneaker collaborations spotted both on and off the runways.
Grenson x New Balance:
Grenson owner and creative director Tim Little was drawn to New Balance for its commitment to British craftsmanship, as both brands have factories and manufacture their shoes in the U.K. For their first tie-in, called “One Shoe, Two Factories,” they created a sneaker that was manufactured across the brands’ two factories in order to utilize varied shoemaking skills. Now, two years later, they came together again to re-create the signature New Balance 576 sneaker, manufactured entirely in Grenson’s factories in Northamptonshire using traditional Grenson materials, including suede and calf leather in a palette of burnished tan, dark brown and burnt oak.
Little said that although the brand is best known for its classic men’s shoes, its customers are responding extremely positively to the sneakers the brand is introducing.
Grenson x Craig Green:
Apart from expanding its repertoire to include sneakers, Grenson has teamed on a capsule range with Craig Green, one of the hottest tickets at London Fashion Week Men’s. Green wanted to add a touch of his own experimental aesthetic to traditional styles by Grenson, picking a lace-up brogue and adding a chunky rubber sole and excess fold flaps on the sides. “It was almost the idea of attempting to make the shoes look like toy soldier shoes,” said the designer.
Labrum x Asics Tiger:
Labrum, a London-based men’s label known for its minimalist staples, teamed with Asics Tiger to a create a series of 60 limited-edition sneakers. Labrum designer Foday Dumbuya customized the popular Gel Mai sneaker by Asics Tiger, an agile style featuring perforated and suede panels. He chose a black and white color palette and added a strap printed with the words “The edge is in the detail.”
Kiko Kostadinov x Asics:
Asics also teamed with the up-and-coming designer Kiko Kostadinov, a hot name on the men’s calendar known for its utilitarian aesthetic and flair for uniform dressing. Kostadinov brought together elements of the Ges-Nimbus 20 and Ges-Venture 6 sneakers, to create a running show with a chunky rubber sole featuring woven fabrics with thin layers of fabric cast over them. The shoes, christened Ges-Burz 1, will be available in black and lime green in limited numbers at Dover Street Market.