Reader Giveaway Opportunity: Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-ups

Editor’s note: Congrats to Jeff, our giveaway winner! Thanks to everyone for reading and participating!

Alright, loyal Style Guide readers — how are we doing today? I’ll tell you this — your day (and week) could be on the verge of getting a lot better? Why’s that? Today’s reader giveaway opportunity is all about the best spring sneakers you need now — one pair, to be more specific. And if you’re a fan of crisp white sneakers for¬†warm weather,¬†consider today your lucky day. As it were, you might recognize the Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up from an earlier Style Guide post on how to dress for a spring road trip. They’re¬†a crisp, clean, simple and subtly stylish pair of sneakers from a brand that excels at making all sorts of excellent gear — from rugged leather boots to a waxed field jacket that proved crucial for my¬†upstate New York road trip last fall.¬† And if you’ve been in need of a spring footwear upgrade, consider that problem solved (if you’re¬†fortunate enough to win, that is). Why exactly are these sneakers such a crucial pair to have in your rotation this season? From the slim profile to the textured upper and clean silhouette, it’s tough to top these guys — I’ve found them to be similarly versatile with other spring gear (including the neat Ministry of Supply Daystarter Band-Collar Shirt¬†and the Going Places Short), and I think you’ll be just as pleased.

Sutro Footwear

Crucially, I’d suggest you style these with a¬†slim polo and classic tan chinos every¬†chance you get — and know that they’ll work with slim chino shorts and a patterned short-sleeve shirt on weekends just as well as the weekday. And if you feel like keeping it simple — say, a slim heather grey pocket tee and olive chinos — the Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up¬†works for that situation, too. So, those tips are all well and good — but how to win, ehh? To win these sneakers, leave a comment below telling me how you’d style them — that’s it! One winner will be chosen at random on midnight on May 13th. Yes indeed, that’s longer than our normal Style Guide giveaways — I’m excited about it, and I hope you are, too. Good luck out there, stay stylish and thanks for reading!

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Style Q+A: Redefining Sneakers with Brooks Heritage

I’ll be the first to admit that I love a great pair of stylish sneakers. Now,¬†I’m by no means what you would call¬†a sneakerheard, but there’s no question that the footwear preferences of The Style Guide venture far beyond rugged leather boots and the like. Be it a pair of white canvas sneakers or perhaps a more adventurous pair of basketball-inspired high-tops, there’s room for every style ¬†in a well-rounded sneaker rotation. That’s what first intrigued me about the footwear innovations going on at Brooks Heritage (led by the subject of today’s Style Guide Q+A, Global Heritage Director Shane Downey). I guarantee you, even if you’re not that into sneakers, you’ll enjoy this — and if you’ve ever wanted more insight into footwear design … you got it.
Frank & Oak
Brooks as a brand is lauded for its quality among those who pound the pavement as racers and casual runners, and they’ve supplemented that approach with the lifestyle-focused Heritage line (which you might recognize from my December trip to Baltimore). Think classic retro runners inspired by past Brooks designs and injected with some modern cool, plus versatile styling potential. That’s certainly the case with the Brooks Heritage Grand Slam Collection. Featuring two silhouettes inspired by classic Brooks tennis shoes, it’s a modern revamp done right — and it proves that a brand can surprise you with what they stock beyond just, say, running shoes.¬† Yes indeed, I took a pair from the Grand Slam Collection — the Brooks Heritage Renshaw¬†— for a spin on a spring break trip to Florida and was more than impressed with the comfort and style of these soon-to-be essential kicks. All of which is to say, if you’d like to learn more about the design inspo behind the Grand Slam Collection, read on for more insight from Mr. Downey. In the meantime, check out your neighborhood menswear guy (that’s me) on Instagram for spring sneaker styling tips and a look inside my footwear collection. Now, onto the questions!
Greats

The Renshaw is a clean update of a classic — the next sneaker to add to your spring rotation? Perhaps.

TSG:  Tell me about the design and research process that went into the new collection?

SD: The process to bring to life the Brooks Grand Slam Collection took about 16 months in total (Editor’s note: 16¬†months!)¬†with the first 4 months just researching the past, looking through old tennis magazines and publications and then purchasing products off of eBay.¬†We bought multiple samples and secured old catalogs that we didn‚Äôt have in our collection as a way to really educate ourselves on our previous position and what we wanted to accomplish in the re-launch of this collection.¬†Getting the midsole and outsole right was the biggest priority and obstacle‚ÄĒwe wanted an outsole that could be executed in both gum and solid rubber, which are staples of the sport while being soft in fit and feel (Editor’s note: The Renshaw is shown above — the Doherty features an all-rubber outsole and equally stylish looks).¬†We had to create this new construction through old photos and similar outsoles, as we were working on a modern interpretation of what we had done in the past.

The Renshaw in action in the Florida sun. Marco Polo by Life/After/Denim. Renshaw Sneakers by Brooks Heritage. Calypso Watch and Runaway Aviators by MVMT Watches.

TSG: The brand has all sorts of retro-inspired runners, but what does the introduction of a tennis shoe silhouette mean for Brooks Heritage?

SD: Court silhouettes are a classic in the athletic/lifestyle world.¬†Classic white leather ebbs and flows with trend, but is a mainstay around the world for all generations — representing a timeless aesthetic.¬†For Brooks, the tennis shoe silhouette was the most natural extension beyond just trendS and the vintage element of the sport. This is a category that we‚Äôve participated in the past in a strong way with marquee athletes, signature technology stories and success in the sport.¬†Brooks has a tennis history that dates back to the early 80‚Äôs. … From our research and archive exploration, we identified a great history of product and technology innovation. It is the perfect way to celebrate our past and look beyond the run as we explore over 100 years of sport and style.

TSG: For the guy who wears stylish dress shoes or tough leather boots more often than sneakers, how would you style these?

SD: Right now — with the simplicity of street wear and overall fashion — ¬†the basics of white, black and grey are driving the industry as consumers are seeking a simple-yet-refined aesthetic that matches their apparel selections.¬†The starkness of the white shoe along with a simple shirt/pant combo is absolutely on trend right now, as less is more.¬†I personally would pair the pair the white-and-white leather Renshaw with a pair of slim-fit chinos for the spring with a printed button-up that would allow for great diversity from day to night on the weekend.¬†It‚Äôs a classic pairing that is timeless in look and relevance.

Beckett Simonon

TSG: Lastly, do you have a favorite shoe in the new collection?

SD: I personally love the White/Navy Blue Renshaw‚ÄĒit has that classic athletic/collegiate aesthetic that I like from a court shoe. I have memories of court shoes as far back as a I can remember, and what stands out is the white leather and subtle color hits like the navy blue on this Renshaw, and what it meant. From young consumers to the old timers, the white leather court shoe is a shoe and a design that stands the test of time.

Well, folks — Shane said it better than I could. For more on the brand, visit the Brooks Heritage site and shop away.

Thanks, as always, for reading — stay stylish!

-Beau

 

Style Pick of the Week: GREATS Royale White Sneaker

Editor’s note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they’re expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here.

Classic, reliable, wearable with anything, and a bit dressier than the classic canvas sneaker.

Classic, reliable, wearable with anything, and a bit dressier than the classic canvas sneaker.

So, we’re back at it again on The Style Guide with a pair of classic white sneakers, just as we covered off a few weeks ago. But there’s something different about the GREATS Royale White Sneaker. What’s that, you ask? Well unlike the SeaVees Legend Sneaker (a highly versatile set of kicks in its own right), the GREATS Royale is just a bit more premium and¬†just a bit more fashion-forward, crafted from a premium Italian leather¬†that¬†makes it endlessly wearable all through summer. And if you follow this blog at all, you know I’m a sucker for great footwear (wink, wink) — that goes for everything from the¬†GREATS Wooster Slip-on to the brand’s¬†Navy Rosen Runner.¬†And in this instance, the GREATS Royale is yet another excellent example of why it’s so essential to have a stylish pair of summer sneakers (or two, or three, or five) in your wardrobe rotation. So that’s why, in a nutshell, we’re covering off on a great pair of white kicks. With the casual versatility that’s permeating the #menswear world today, white leather sneakers are a reliable stand-in across at least three seasons (yes, even in fall). But when the weather’s warm out, they’re a great go-to. They add a crisp finish to simple rolled denim and a short-sleeve henley, they bring an air of sporty cool to slim tan chinos and a classic polo , and they work very well with linen khaki shorts and a¬†striped tee (check out this Instagram post for an example of¬†one way¬†to style white sneakers). And that’s not even covering off on the ultimate way to style these guys…

GREATS starts with details like rich full-grain Italian leather, and builds silhouettes that are affordable and high-quality.

GREATS starts with details like rich full-grain Italian leather, and builds silhouettes that are affordable and high-quality.

That, my friends, would be with a more daring combo — think rocking these¬†guys with¬†a textured blue chambray suit and white OCBD, or alongside some light grey chinos and that same blue chambray jacket for a great mix of tailored style. And when you mix and match other separates — like swapping in a white polo over the suit’s blue chambray trousers — you get an even more summer-ready combo; it’s not often that¬†you find sneakers you can wear to brunch or the office, but these are¬†just the ticket. Crucially, you get all this versatility for just $159 from GREATS, and the brand (if you’re unfamiliar) brings its knowledge of craftsmanship and quality to the table from start to finish. We’re talking full-grain Italian leather and waxed cotton laces, for starters. And if the GREATS Royale is anything like its other sneakers, it should be ridiculously comfortable, fairly easy to clean and long-lasting. You can’t ask for much more than that, can you?

Do you own the GREATS Royale? How do you like ’em, and how would you wear them?

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

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