What makes a good summer white?

Words by Sam Arojo

“Summer Whites” may mean a number of things to a number of people. I have a friend who uses it to describe the type of girl he dates over the warmer months while I know a guy who thinks I’m in the market for class A’s whenever I say I’m shopping for some. To me however, it will always refer to the ridiculously white trainers I’ll be wearing over the hottest months of the year.

Selecting a good pair of summer whites requires a bit more guile and forward thinking than you’d expect though. Yes, there are pairs that will always be a good choice like the Puma Basket or Adidas’ Stan Smith but with so many new brands popping up in footwear nowadays more choice just means more chance to get it wrong.

The phrase ‘the devil’s in the detail’ is relevant to summer whites and that’s because you should aim for the opposite. You should aim for as little details and aspects to shoe as possible, minimalism is key. Pairs like Converse’s Jack Purcell or Eytys’ Mother are good choices. Stay away from Air Maxes and pretty much anything by New Balance. You’ve had all year to wear technical kicks flooded with accents, velcro and flashing lights so it’s time you made things simple.

Businessman, philanthropist and one of the greatest human beings to ever walk this polluted planet once said “is it cos I cop Maybachs like white tees?”. You should take that line by Puff Daddy and replace ‘Maybachs’ with ‘summer whites’. White creps get dirty and fast. So before you make your choice of coke boy whites remember you’re probably going to have to buy another pair. Kicks that you can afford to replace as frequently as white tees is so crucial to retaining swag lord status over summer. Avoid blowing your paycheck on some icy white Jordans or anything too top tier – anything by Common Projects is pretty much out of the question. Find a pair you’ll be able to afford again as soon as some drunk chick spills her drink or your feet, or you make the mistake of wearing your beloved whites to a festival. Stick with brands like Vans and Reebok and avoid anything that has a “(brand name) x (some designer’s name). Well, unless you are Puff Daddy of course.

Finally an important tip is to bear in mind just what will you be doing this summer. Are you most likely to be beach side or road side? Will be at roof parties or spending your time on grass? All vital factors in picking a pair that you can wear without the fear of total destruction.

A simple, versatile pair of summer whites for a good price. That is what you should want. With new players to the game spitting out pairs as quickly as lookbooks I can’t stress the importance of picking the white shoe (white, right? get it? Never mind). However if all else fails and choosing a pair of white on whites makes you a nervous wreck of sweat and unspent money, remember you can’t go wrong with a pair of all white Air Force 1s.

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