Timothée Chalamet is no stranger to “best dressed” roundups. Whether it’s showing everyone how tailoring is done right at Venice Film Festival in 2019 or pairing a Prada jacket with a Chelsea hat on a walk through London, Chalamet’s versatility is aspirational enough to make even the staunchest of minimalists reconsider their hardline stance on how many clothes people actually need.
This past weekend, Chalamet raised eyebrows when he stepped out in NYC wearing STAUD’s colorful New Balance 997 collaboration. The sneaker — whose ’80s color scheme is said to be inspired by vintage gym wear once seen on Princess Diana — features hues of gold, rust, blue, pink, and green on a white base.
It’s safe to say that this explosion of color wouldn’t be lying closest to the door for most sneakerheads, as the radiant nature of the shoe makes it harder to style than, say, a pair of classic gray 990s (which Chalamet has been seen in on occasion as well). But Chalamet, as somewhat of an aspirational figure when it comes to fashion, isn’t your regular sneakerhead. He previously wore $30 Walmart kicks and absolutely bodied the fit, making us question why we ever spent more than $50 on a pair of sneakers.
To offset the STAUD x New Balance 997’s vivid hues, Chalamet has opted for a combination of all-black pants and top (as well as a black face mask — stay safe out there, guys). The combination is tried and tested — how many times have you seen sneakerheads on Reddit convincing themselves that Red Octobers can only be worn with an all-black fit? Too often, if you ask me.
Still, just because something’s been done before doesn’t mean that we can’t recognize when it’s been done right. The combination works, because the eye isn’t overwhelmed by colors or patterns as it travels towards Chalamet’s feet, clearly the centerpiece of the outfit.
There’s a reason colorful sneakers exist and why all major sportswear brands have at least a few wildly colorful designs on their shelves — as timeless as the gray 990s or the white-on-white Air Force 1s are, sometimes we might want to switch it up and keep the paparazzi (or our friends) guessing. Wearing a sneaker like Chalamet’s STAUD x New Balance 997 is the perfect way to do that, especially during a pandemic, when we’re going outside less and hiding, safely, behind our masks.
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