*this post is in partnership with Kenneth Cole, but as always, I wouldn’t be sharing it with you if I didn’t think it was worth it!

More often than not I find myself getting ready from the shoes first. I check the weather, I check my planner, and then I check in with myself to decide exactly what type of shoes are going to work best for me that day and then I begin. Due to the fact that I’m so experienced with this, I was thrilled with Kenneth Cole wanted me to try out a couple of their new styles.

First up, was the very casual Bailey Jogger Sneaker.

If you don’t already know, I’m a sneaker freak. I love them. However, on a day where I need to be a bit more dressed up but I’m still able to wear a sneaker, I don’t want to go with something too casual. That’s where these come in. They’re a great example of what I like to call a “grown man” sneaker. The design is intricate, but the overall feel is very comfortable. To me they look like a futuristic vintage running shoe, which is weird to say considering it’s a bit oxymoronic.

Aside from the crazy level of comfort these offer, I had a lot of fun styling them…

Knowing that I was starting with the shoes in building this outfit, I went with a solid black sock so as to avoid any distraction from the shoe. Next, I’ve been doing a more conscious job of mixing camel brown and black lately because it just feels good when I’m wearing it. There’s a mix of edge and class that combining these colors exudes. If you’re someone who likes to wear brown, don’t shy away from this shoe because it has black details.

Combining them with an all black upper allowed me to let the shoes stand out and really make a bit of a statement in my look.

If mixing brown and black is a bit too fashion “faux pas” for you, a pair of black trousers or a lighter wash pair of jeans would work great too. Ultimately, straddling the line between casual and formal is what a look like this does so well and it all starts with the shoes.

Now onto something a bit more formal…

Getting dressed up during the spring and summer is a lot of fun because you can incorporate interesting colors, patterns, and cuts into your outfits. When I saw these navy blue cap toe oxfords with Kenneth Cole’s new Techni-Cole insole design, I couldn’t pass them up. I’m a huge fan of classic pieces in unique colors. They’re insanely comfortable on the first wear and a very cool aspect is that the shoelaces are elastic so they stay nice and snug to your foot.

When styling these, I wanted to wear something that could work as a dressy night out look or that you could wear to an informal summer wedding.

Although the navy blue on the shoe would’ve popped really nicely against a grey or green, I really liked the idea of matching it with my suit. The subtle pattern on the suit also adds some extra style to the look while maintaining the classic vibes that the shoes provide. A slight pop of color with the shirt worked nicely and to be honest I only wore the hat with it because I didn’t feel like doing my hair. If you’re wearing this outfit to an event like a wedding, ditch the hat. However if you’re wearing this on casual Friday and then heading out on the town after work, the hat can work nicely.

I’m all about no-show socks when the weather permits, especially because I don’t want to take away from the design of these beautiful shoes. However if you’re doing something that socks are necessary, try going with a bright yellow, pink, or green sock as opposed to something too plain. This really drives the point home that you’ve got unique color happening on your feet that isn’t to be missed.

The days of dress shoes being stiff and uncomfortable are (hopefully) over. This new Techni-Cole shoe design from Kenneth Cole incorporates foam and gel on the inside of the shoe both at the heel and the ball of your foot. This makes them feel like you’ve owned them for years from the very first wear. If you’re someone who does a lot of walking to and from work or you spend a lot of time on your feet during the day, a good investment in quality shoes will change your life.

Next time you’re about to get dressed, think about things from the ground up. Start with the right type of shoe for what you’ve got going on and then get creative with different things to surround them with to be looking and feeling your best. Don’t just go with the same thing you always do, take an extra second to imagine what else could work with what you’ve got.

You can check out both of these shoes from Kenneth Cole here and here if you’re interested in picking them up for yourself. In my opinion you’ll be glad you did!

Questions? Comments? Find me on social media at @parkeryorksmith or email me directly at parker@thelooksmith.com!

Thanks for reading!


About the author

I'm Parker York Smith, a curious dude still very much figuring everything out. I hail from the Midwest but have been dwelling in Los Angeles for the last few years being a pretty stereotypical west coast transplant. I'm a fashion geek, I love to walk (a LOT) and I do my best to find the bright side. I'm extremely excited about this blog and hope that (with some hard work and luck) it turns into what I believe it can. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please get in touch with me via my social networks (which can be found in the sidebar) or email me at parker@thelooksmith.com.

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