With summer 2020 in full swing, and social events coming few and far between, your summer shoe game should be poised to make the strongest statement it can, when it can. With 2020 seeing big shoe releases pushed further and further back, it can be hard to decide whats worth waiting for. If your’e like me and can’t wait for a sneaker release, this list showcases solid summer choices to hold you over until that Off-White x Jordan IV collab drops. While this list is inherently a reflection of personal preferences, the only shoe that occupies a space due to personal bias is the #5 spot. In a world where Converse All-Star’s rule the dressed down market, I am tired of seeing that narrow silhouette and even more tired of the Commes Des Garcons incarnation of the All-Star. Every other shoe has been judged on three criteria, price point, value (the quality you get for the price you pay) and of course, the overall aesthetic.
5.PF Flyers Center Lo
The PF Flyers Center Lo has been an American staple since its founding in 1937 in Akron, Ohio. Since then its permeated pop culture, most notably in the 1993 film “The Sandlot,” where the Center Hi was showcased in an all black colorway. Needless to say, the shoe is soaked in 90’s kid nostalgia. Admittedly, the Center model does have a limited number of colorways, but what it lacks in variety it more than makes up for in value with a 40$ price tag. The Center Lo (the low top version of the Center Hi) offers Red, White, Blue, Black and Cream/Natural colorways, but for the summer, the Natural colorway is the best choice. The Natural/Cream colorway is comprised of an off white upper, with white mid sole and a blue and red stripe that wraps around said mid sole. Full disclosure, the shoe resembles the Converse All-Star, but it has some very important differences. The most prominent feature comes from the Center Lo’s toe box with its trademarked vertical ribbing, giving it a more pronounced profile than the All-Star. One of the features that goes unseen, and underappreciated, is the PF Flyer’s wedge sole. This provides more arch support for the wearer which is where the PF comes from in the company’s name, Posture Foundation. These shoes run true to size, with a comfortable width, and have been a mainstay in my personal wardrobe for over 5 years as a perfect dressed down, casual choice.
4.Adidas Nite Jogger
The Adidas Nite Jogger comes in a variety of colors, and if you have any experience with the sneaker market, that means it comes with a variety of price tags. The Nite Jogger achieves a perfect balance of form and function, and while the second half of the list is filled with shoes that are more form….. I do appreciate a shoe that can go beyond just turning heads. Along with a comfortable design, the Nite Jogger has seen some notable and diverse collaborations, ranging from video game personality “NInja,” the “White Mountaneering Brand,” and even the rap figure “Pusha-T.” However, the most exciting collaboration has been Beyonce’s “Ivy Park” collection. The deep maroon paired with a rusted orange, and topped off by a light cream gives this colorway an unexpected summer feel to it that works equally well in the fall. The “Ivy Park” Nite Joggers will cost you a little extra coming in at an average 200$ on resale sites, but if you want a colorway that’s a little easier to find, and a little easier on the budget, the “Morse Code” version of the shoe delivers equal value for half the price. The “Morse Code’s” bright orange accent with grey uppers give you a brighter color profile that’s ideal for summer weather, while staying at about 90$ for all sizes. The shoe does run true to size and its not overly narrow like a pair of Nike Blazers.
3.Reebok Club C 85 Vintage
The Reebok Club C 85 Vintage is a shoe that I was “late to the party” on recognizing. The shoe is a low profile, casual sneaker with a yellowed, off-white colorway that looks good in casual settings, and nightlife alike. This shoe is probably the best to pair with shorts compared to the other shoes on the list, but that’s because it leans more towards the casual side. The Club C bears a striking resemblance to the Adidas/Yeezy Powerphase Calabasas, without the hefty price tag. The Club C comes in at about 75$ with select colorways reaching 100$, so it fits into almost everyone’s budget, making it a must cop for the summer. Reebok’s vintage shoe does have some drawbacks however, with its already yellowed uppers being the main one. Because of the all white(ish) uppers, the shoe looks best in its pristine, out of the box condition. Unlike other all white shoes, the Club C lacks significant accents of any other color, so any scuff or mark on it will be amplified by the sheer white surrounding it. These sneakers run true to size, so stick to what you know and you’ll be fine.
2.Nike Blazer Mid 77 Vintage
The Nike Blazer Mid ’77 Vintage has cemented itself as a timeless footwear piece. With a resurgence in vintage and retro fashion, the shoe has been propelled into the closets of hardcore sneaker collectors and casual admirers alike. The beauty of the Blazer Mid comes from its accessibility, with a reasonable 100$ price tag. If you have a little extra time on your hands you can find some pairs for as low as 70$. While the shoe may lack a certain sense of flamboyance in in its silhouette, the solid color blocking makes it easy to pair with a variety of outfits. The most versatile, of course, is the original black and white colorway, with the uppers made of leather and small white canvas accents on the sides and toe box. Unlike other shoes that are primarily white, the Blazer only gains character with every scuff and scrape. The shoe looks equally good fresh out of the box, as it does after a few months of wear. The longevity of this shoe gives it the most “bang for your buck,” out of all the shoes on the list.
Note: These shoes tend to run on the smaller side because of their narrow design, so if you’re like me (size 11.5), and have a larger foot, buy a half size larger than you normally do.
1.The Jordan Brand’s Metallic IV’s are the shoes of summer 2020
The Jordan Brand released a metallic series for the Jordan 4 late last May retailing at 190$, just in time for the season. The shoe has been redesigned with an all white colorway, accompanied by a flash of color on the eyelets, heel and Jumpman logo located on the tongue. The four colorways, Purple Metallic, Green Metallic, Red Metallic, and Orange Metallic pay homage to the Air Jordan 1 colorways of the same name. This release marries the iconic silhouette with a bold white redesign that allows the shoe’s subtlety to perfectly accentuate an outfit without drawing attention away from the rest of the ensemble. Worn with either shorts or pants the shoe adds depth to any outfit with a crisp, clean finish.
If you managed to get yourself a pair of the Metallic IV’s you are one of the lucky few. However, if you lost to the sneaker bots like the majority of people, the sneaker resale market’s got you covered. Sites like Goat.com, StadiumGoods.com , and FlightClub.com still have a few pairs available, but I would steer clear of StockX after their data breach from late 2019. As for sizing, I would recommend you buy true to size. My Jordan IV’s have always ran perfectly snug at my true size, not too tight and not too much space.
As we all know, style is a very subjective thing. What works for me, may not work for you and vice versa. Hopefully, this list has helped you pull the trigger on some of these shoes, and if not, hopefully it exposed you to a shoe that you might have overlooked in today’s over saturated sneaker market. Either way, you can’t go wrong….. unless you buy some Comme Des Garcons Converse All Stars, please stop buying those.