Buckle Up for a Wild Shoe Summer

Even before the pandemic came crashing down on the world, menswear was already letting its freak flag fly. Outlandish sneakers paved the way, and dress loafers soon followed suit. Pants absolutely freaked it, and then actual suits did the same. The goal for fashion-forward dudes, it seemed, was to get within striking distance of today’s most adventurous dressers, like Lakeith Stanfield or Harry Styles. Which is to say, weird and sharp and exhilarating all at once.

Then the pandemic came, and the wild fashion took a backseat as fleece-made clothes and cozy loungewear reigned supreme. But one area of the closet remained pretty fantastic: footwear. The most covetable kicks of the past year read like the fever dream of unexpected footwear styles, from high-style water shoes to far-out mules and more. If you wondered of a chance that things would mellow out this summer, Our Legacy and Sunnei are here to stomp that out. So, buckle up—because it looks like we’re in for another summer of wild-as-hell footwear.

First up is Our Legacy’s “Camion” mule. The Swedish brand, beloved for its transcendent sweaters and other irreverent fashions, has never shied away from its more eccentric tendencies—and that is especially true for this summer-ready shoe. The open-heeled shoe is an international delight. It comes complete with an Italian buckle strap, a sturdy and made-in-USA Vibram outsole, and a midsole made of German leather. Not to mention that raised heel. This is as advanced-level of a summertime shoe as it gets, fitting for both an Italian disco hall or the concrete streets of Soho.

Next is the “1000CHIODI” shoe from the Italian label Sunnei. Sunnei, much like Our Legacy, has never been content to color inside the lines, and this futuristic-looking shoe keeps that same energy. The lightweight slip-on is made from technical fabric and is beefed up for extra support at the toe, side, and heel. (The stretchy material makes for a shoe that fits like a glove.) The silhouette is covered in tiny rubber studs—a little like if Dippin’ Dots were on the mood board. It also comes in a whole bunch of colors, from swirls of candy pink and blue to navy and neon green.

If a heeled white-leather mule and a track shoe-gone-mad feel a little too eccentric for your taste, don’t worry: the summer’s only starting. Just know that things are probably going to get a whole lot weirder in the fashion space before they get plainer. So make the most of it: summer is almost here, and the footwear is marvelous.

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