Sneakers and Suits: No, thank you

Last week, Evolving Style mused about wearing sneakers with a casual suit, saying, “Done well, it just looks good.” (Yes, he said much more than that and wrote a follow-up, too. Go read both, as they’re the reason why I’m writing this post.) 

One may argue the look is “trendy”, “fashionable” or even “stylish” in the most broad sense of the term, but it doesn’t present a look of being well-dressed in a “classic” sense. And that’s my objection to the look.

I’m not entirely sure why people enjoy the sneakers and suit look. Perhaps these synthetic, rubber-soled, radioactive-neon tumors show their keen sense of rebelliousness and creativity — so eager to break rules! — where the contradiction is the appeal.

But I don’t share those values and it’s my preference to wear clothing where each item shares a similar level of formality and function. 

The visual effect of looking at a tailored suit and then ending at the sneaker is a jarring one. This comes from the inherent contradictory realms the pieces occupy. To be dressed well, all elements must work in concert, not in chaos. 

The simple fact is that sneakers are for athletics and sportswear — they’re a different class of clothing in terms of use and formality than what even the most casual of suits can occupy. The two should remain separate for their respective functions and never intersect. 

It should be understood that while sneakers are for casual wear, a casual suit is simply just a less-formal type of suit. This doesn’t diminish the suit’s importance and reason for being worn to that of a situation where casual athletic sportswear is appropriate. 

A casual suit requires a more casual shoe, however, not the most casual shoe. Bucks, saddle shoes, spectators, suede brogues and even the controversial loafer are appropriate for the casual suit. I feel this achieves a harmonious look and is best. 

I find the look a bit childish, like what a teenager or disaffected college student would do in a situation where they’re forced to wear a suit but hate the idea of dressing up. 

I like wearing the appropriate clothing for the situation. I see no personal need for fashionable rebellion. 

97 Notes

  1. studioold reblogged this from thesilentist
  2. yourownkaishakunin reblogged this from thesilentist
  3. gabcamoya reblogged this from mrmoderngentleman
  4. jayyebacon reblogged this from mrmoderngentleman
  5. edwards303 reblogged this from mrmoderngentleman and added:
    I second that. Slap the taste out of their mouth.
  6. transient-reverie reblogged this from mrmoderngentleman
  7. thesociallyawkwardpopularkids reblogged this from mrmoderngentleman and added:
    depending on how it’s played, it works like the bottom two but the top one….nope. not never.
  8. mrmoderngentleman reblogged this from rakehound and added:
    Whoever ok’d sneakers and suits (besides RDJ) should be slapped.
  9. life-is-music-to-me reblogged this from thesilentist
  10. buddhaandcoffee reblogged this from thesilentist
  11. tailormadestyle reblogged this from humblegentleman
  12. humblegentleman reblogged this from thesilentist and added:
    I have had the same reservations about the look of wearing sneakers with a causal suit. Although I thought it would be...
  13. denzeljward reblogged this from thesilentist and added:
    I agree with him Sneakers with suits is a no go
  14. thelanguorofyouth reblogged this from thesilentist
  15. alwaysbewoke reblogged this from rakehound and added:
    Disagree. I dig sneakers...boots with suits. Adding a sense of fun and casualness
  16. aguynamedlou reblogged this from thesilentist
  17. hommism reblogged this from rakehound
  18. nurenaissanceman reblogged this from rakehound
  19. rakehound reblogged this from thesilentist and added:
    NO. or how to ruin a suit.
  20. cumberbootie reblogged this from thesilentist

About The Silentist

A menswear blog on finding your personal style, written by Kiyoshi Martinez.

I work at Khaki's of Carmel and live in the Monterey Bay area. Formerly from Chicago.

E-mail me, I'm fairly nice: thesilentist@gmail.com

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