FrontRunners July 2014: FASHION

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Kicks into High Gear

Sporty but not built for playing sports, Christian Louboutin sneakers (www.christianlouboutin.com) are among a range of athletic-turned-fancy footwear recently released by menswear designers. The youthful styles emerging from Silicon Valley, where many executives wear sneakers and other casual attire to the office, encouraged designers to offer their takes on the old Chuck Taylors. Louboutin’s sneakers are made from handwoven cotton and feature calf-leather trim and the shiny red soles that are the Parisian designer’s signature. The standard-cut sneakers are $745, and the high-tops are $845. “Sneakers, to me, should be well balanced,” says Louboutin. “I design so the shoes can translate fluently between business and sportswear. An interesting sneaker will draw attention to the feet and create a more compelling look for a man.”