Wearing sneakers with a dress

LogoAs I mentioned last week, I really like a dressy meets casual look, but I wasn’t sure that wearing sneakers with a dress was something I’d ever do. Though this isn’t exactly a brand new idea, there was a time when it would have been considered a huge fashion faux pas and I’m old enough to remember those days. That sometimes makes adopting a new trend difficult. The popularity of the look made me want to give it a try though, so this is what I wore to church last Sunday.


You’ve seen all the pieces on the blog before, but never together. The navy lace dress is several years old and the sneakers are Circus by Sam Edelman, purchased on sale last February. Since it was a chilly morning and I was going for a somewhat casual look, I added one of my thrifted jean jackets.

I suspect that the sneakers with a dress look began when sensible businesswomen started wearing these comfortable shoes to walk or take public transit to work, changing into dressier ones when they arrived at the office. Gradually, the look which seemed incongruous at first, caught on and became an enduring trend. Today, it’s a go-to ensemble for up-to-date fashionistas. Even brides are seen wearing sneakers under their wedding dresses!

IMG_6481 - Version 2The key to making sneakers with a dress look polished is to make sure that they’re clean and new looking. Though some women choose to wear actual athletic shoes with their dresses, fashion sneakers like the ones I’m wearing are not the same as the ones you’d wear to the gym. Rather than a sole that’s designed for running, walking, or any kind of high impact exercise, these have a thinner, smoother sole.

There are definite advantages to the sneakers with a dress look. You can look feminine and put together without sacrificing comfort which is definitely important to me! I knew it was a big departure from my usual look though when my husband commented on my footwear on the way out the door. I think he thought I’d accidentally put on the wrong pair of shoes!


What about you? Do you wear sneakers with dresses? Would you?


12 thoughts on “Wearing sneakers with a dress

  1. Sorry, like you, I can remember when this was a faux pas and, to me, it still is. Does nothing for the outfit. Some trends are not meant to be adopted.

  2. The whole wedding party wore Converse sneakers…girls in white, boys in black at my daughters wedding last summer. I had my doubts,but they looked pretty cool!

  3. I wear skirts or dresses all the time. With dressy sandals. My sandals are so comfortable I could walk all day in them on level ground.

    This June I took my running shoes to Wales and wore them with skirts on rough ground. I would also wear them on hikes. I plan to take them on my next Europe trip in December because of comfort and so I don’t trip over the cobblestones.

    But my usual look is more classy than casual.

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