How to Wear a Blazer + Sneakers Outfit Formula: Inspired by Nancy
Nancy's blazer and sneakers post at Nancy's Fashion Style last Friday was extremely well-timed for me! She wore a dress with a white blazer and white sneakers, which is not a look I could pull off, but made me think that I should try a blazer + pants/jeans-based outfit with my white leather tennis shoes.
And when I say "tennis shoes," I mean tennis shoes, as in: these are the shoes I bought *ahem* years ago when my husband and I took tennis lessons and were playing tennis every week. They are K-Swiss tennis shoes of a classic design in white leather, which is a shoe style having a fashion moment. They have been my go-to casual "wear with sweatpants to the doctor's office" shoe since the start of the pandemic, but I haven't been wearing them as a style choice with normal outfits despite this being a current look...
...until last week, when I decided to test them out with my red plaid sweatshirt and skinny jeans for an ultra-easy Sunday outfit. I had worn the sweatshirt with skinnies and my navy floral Keds earlier this winter, so it was easy to switch the shoes to my white sneakers for a variation on that look. I wore my ankle length skinny jeans and narrowly cuffed the hem up once to show off the entire shoe. I was on my feet a lot when wearing this outfit and was pleasantly surprised by how comfortable the shoes were. I mean, yes, that's kind of the point of them, but on a normal day at home, I end up switching into my sturdy house shoes at some point, especially if I'm on my feet. But that wasn't something I even thought about doing in these sneakers.
Since I had just dipped my white-sneaker-clad toe into the "styling white tennis shoes in a 'real' outfit" waters the previous weekend, Nancy's blazer + white sneakers idea hit me at just the right time for me to be open to it. And it just so happened that my pre-planned outfit for the next day was a blazer + sneakers outfit with my navy floral Keds. So all I had to do to immediately implement this style inspiration was to switch out my Keds for my white sneakers in that outfit!
The pre-planned outfit was already going to be a bit of a stretch for me because I was pairing the sneakers with my wider leg trouser jeans instead of straight leg or skinny jeans as usual. I had only tried sneakers with wider leg jeans once before (my medium wash trouser jeans) as demonstrated in this OOTD. I liked the combination here but it just isn't a styling choice I think about when putting outfits together.
I am surprised by how much I really like the white leather tennis shoes with the dark wash trouser jeans! I was mentally prepared to find the combination too reminiscent of an "outdated look worn by a person who hasn't moved on to fashion choices of this century" because looser jeans and white sneakers is an older look (1980s/90s?) that was really not in style at all for a long time during the skinny jeans era. But in the context of my entire outfit, it definitely is working for me!
I do not have a prominent sporty/relaxed element to my style, so wearing athletic shoes outside of a clearly functionally-driven athleisure outfit is challenging. The trick, I think, was that the top half of my outfit was completely in my comfort zone stylistically so I wasn't getting the "wearing a costume" feeling that I could easily experience in an "inspired by" look. (See more on this topic in my inspiration versus aspiration post.) My outfit also reflects a modern outfit formula (graphic T + blazer) so I wasn't getting either the "stale/outdated" vibes either.
I have to say, I am so delighted by this particular graphic T + blazer + scarf combination! The scarf perfectly brings together the navy/grey of the blazer and the light blue/grey of the T with its icy light blue/dark blue/grey color palette for a look with a tight color story but a lot of visual interest. (Actually, "tight color story but a lot of visual interest" is pretty much my happy place stylistically.) This is a combination I'd like to wear again...and I have indeed added it to a spreadsheet to remind myself to try it again with a different bottom half.
Also on point is my daily bracelet stack based on the "icy" DIY paper bead set made to coordinate with my light pink/navy floral blouse. It's perfect with this scarf.
I brought out my cloisonné fish earrings again because their shades-of-blue color scheme were a nice pairing with the scarf.
As I discussed in my post about my two pairs of wide leg trouser jeans, I'm all about the just-short-of-skimming-the-ground length when wearing any kind of flared pants/jeans. That full length just looks so right to me. I know that cropped flares have been trendy for a long time now, and they are certainly a very practical option in any kind of wet weather, but for myself, I prefer wearing the full-length version.
Certainly that could change at some point, but I am choosing to lean into that preference right now...which has the nice effect that I haven't bought any new jeans since 2019 and have gotten the total numbers of wears on my two trouser jeans to 27 and 28 wears! (The cost per wear stands at $0.28 and $0.27.) 30 wears on thrifted jeans, here we come.
I'm going to wrap this up with a couple of older OOTD featuring the blazer + sneakers combination with my navy floral Keds. Both outfits include a polka dot print mix and colored denim...and are a good representation of my typical way of wearing this formula.
Are you wearing white sneakers in your outfits? How do you like to wear them? Do you prefer a bulkier white sneaker or a more refined/low profile one?
Blogs I link up with are listed here.