Introducing cocktail trainers

Here’s the best thing we’ve seen all week: trainers that you can wear out in the evening

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By Frankie Graddon on

The fashion world loves to invent things: mini bags, ear cuffs, blanket coats etc. Usually, it’s a load of guff. A clever marketing tool to make us buy yet more stuff that we probably don’t need. “What do you mean you haven’t got a pair of leather skorted jeggings yet? Pah! Are you mad?” That sort of thing. However, there is a new fashion invention afoot and this one makes perfect sense. In fact it’s rather brilliant. Cocktail trainers.

Er, cocktail trainers – WTF? Indeed. I broached the subject during a meeting at The Pool HQ yesterday and was met with equal parts confusion and joy. What the hell are they? How did they come to be? Where do we get a pair? So many questions. Let me explain. 

What are cocktail trainers? 

Answer: really fancy trainers. Think metallic, printed, embellished, coloured, jewelled – really chuffing jazzy. The idea is that they replace your usual going-out shoes when going out, meaning that you are at once dressy and comfortable. Excellent. 

Where did they come from? 

Dior and Chanel, initially. Both introduced the idea of evening trainers at their spring/summer 2014 couture shows: the former covering modernist slip-ons in tiny crystals, flowers and bows; the latter reimagining classic lace-ups in metallic tweed and pastel gauze. And both pairing them with romantic evening frocks. 

How do we get a pair? 

As is the way with these things, practically everyone has jumped on the cocktail-trainer bandwagon. Harrods is celebrating the launch of their Shoe Haven on the 5th of September with a limited-edition range of fancy trainers, including Dolce & Gabbana’s jewelled pair (£925) and a golden studded pair by Valentino (£870). Brain-achingly lovely, but yikes!

Master of the jazzy jumper Markus Lupfer has done a small collection of floral embroidered glittery trainers at a slightly more doable £235 and available online now. However, the winner is & Other Stories with their silver metallic trainers at £95. Wonderfully sleek and smart, wear with a going-out dress or a sharp tuxedo jacket and trousers. 

See, best invention ever.

Three of the best cocktail trainers



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