Marc by Marc Jacobs Paradise Stripe DressThese days it is very much on trend to wear sleeker fashion sneakers and chunkier athletic sneakers with just about anything. Wearing your gym shoes outside of the gym used to be a faux pas, but fashion has moved on. It’s a nod to the Sporty Luxe trend, our age of casualization, and our growing needs for comfort. In fact, jarring juxtapositions created by finishing off a stylish outfit with a pair of sneakers have become fashion forward. Check out the 2015 Resort collections by Nicole Miller, Rag & Bone and Max Mara to get a taste of what I mean. 

Wearing all sorts of sneaker styles with jeans, pants and shorts is a very doable combination, and I have a Pinterest board devoted to the look. But what about pairing sneakers with dresses and skirts? The pictures below are a pretty good representation of the vibe, although by no means exhaustive.

For more inspiration, check out these street style shots that show sneakers combined with skirts and dresses: 

Note that non-athletic sneakers like Converse and slip-ons, as well as chunkier athletic styles are paired with skirts and dresses across all sorts of colours. Outfits are casual and dressy. The look is more about flat sneakers at the moment, but wedged sneakers are not at all dated. 

I’m a yay all the way, and like all the looks that I’ve linked to above. I’m ALL for incorporating on trend, comfortable footwear into our outfits, and applaud 2014 fashion for liberating our feet. Yes, the combination can go horribly wrong, but with proportions in place that are just flattering enough, and a little fashionable intention, it’s an interesting and current look that is practical and comfortable. 

The secret to making this combination just flattering enough is twofold. First, leave off the socks, or at least wear them so that they aren’t visible. I’ll go a step further by saying that I personally prefer it when the laces are tucked away too, but that’s not essential. 

Second, create a longer leg line. That’s achieved by wearing the length of the skirt or dress on or above the knee. Wearing a column of colour will further lengthen the leg line, as will wearing sneakers that are low contrast to your skin tone. Wearing a longer skirt with wedge sneakers is effective because you’re adding the height of a heel. Wearing a midi tube skirt with wedge sneakers creates flattering proportions because the tight silhouette of the skirt adds structure to the outfit. Wearing a crop top with a longer skirt will further lengthen the leg by visually shortening the torso. 

For my own style, I’ll be embracing this look with white sneakers and a boxy shirtdress for hot Summer weather. No socks, and tucked away laces. I’ve chosen white sneakers because they look the prettiest and most crisp to my eye, and bookend the white in my hair. I’ve chosen the sack-like boxy shirtdress for the sneaker pairing because it creates a column of colour, and because it’s about the only style of dress that I like at a length above my knee. I’ll add a refined white backpack to the outfit to accentuate the sporty and pull together the look by repeating the colour white. When it comes to this trend, I am so in.

Over to you. Will you wear sneakers with dresses or skirts? If so, do you stick to fashion sneakers, or will you be more daring and wear the chunkier athletic styles? If it’s not your look, can you appreciate the combination on others? Or are you a nay all the way.

Zara Combined Maxi DressZara Striped Full Skirt

Zara Lace DressZara Printed Dress

JIMMY CHOO Demi Snake Effect Leather Slip-On SneakersNIKE Air Pegasus 83 Leather Suede and Mesh Sneakers

SAINT LAURENT Leopard Print Glossed Leather Slip-On SneakersPIERRE HARDY Paneled Suede and Leather Sneakers

Mango Faded Print Dress