Written by Jon Clarke

There are certain things every man should own. Think of them as the wardrobe basics. The white plimsoll is one such thing. A reliable go-to, informal ice-breaker. A ‘slip these on and go’ road trip companion. An unspoken message to your hot date that you’re super chill, not a try-hard, but a sophisticated minimalist that appreciates simple pleasures.

In a recent article by Footwear News, CMO of Footlocker, Andrew Gray, highlights the fact that trainers/white plimsolls “complement every outfit, and the increased acceptance of colour in apparel today support a clean footwear look.”

In fact, our very own Brand/Marketing Manager, Jack Dyson, weighs in on the ever-increasing practical styling of the white plimsoll:

"We've seen white footwear take center stage in recent years when it comes to menswear. Gentlemen are now, more than ever, looking for practical styling that can be worn from the boardroom to the gym, so it comes as no surprise really.

The white plimsoll really is a must have for anyone looking for effortless style and will stand the test of time, much like a classic tan brogue or a black Chelsea boot."

So you've heard it from the experts, but why specifically are white plimsolls a wardrobe essential?

White plimsolls aren’t season dependent

Granted the weather is slowly taking a turn for the worst as we enter autumn. And granted, most people tend to envisage white plimsolls with chino shorts, sunglasses and a tan. But most people are wrong. As an essential piece of footwear, the white plimsoll goes with jeans, chinos, shorts, even suits (though this tends to be reserved for the quirky high-fashion types) - just about any form of trouser going.


Harlem White


In fact, they are a refreshing contrast during winter time, as people start busting out their dark rugged boots - steering clear of lighter colours in fear of staining (something we cover further down). The casual nature, in both style and colour, of the white plimsoll unlocks an entirely different wardrobe for you. In a crowd of dark tones and heavy duty material, you’ll still be channelling cool summer vibes, and girls dig that.

Your outfit can be more relaxed and feature brighter colours, and it’s all thanks to the humble white plimsoll.

Embrace the ageing of white plimsolls

As mentioned above, people often reserve white footwear for dry summer months, to avert any staining or wear and tear. And while a logical approach, we think doing this is denying yourself a lot of style and pleasure. It’s like these odd people that buy a new sofa, but leave the plastic on it in order to preserve condition (this phenomenon is more common than you might think). The whole point of buying it is surely to bask in the style and comfort?

Top tip

And we’ll be the first to concede that white plimsolls might not age as gracefully as some Sherwood boots, but embrace them for what they are. Brooklyn Beckham, while not quite on the same level of his dad as an icon of fashion, is renowned for his love of white Chuck taylor converse. And with all the millions he has, you’d think he’d have a new pair every week, right? Wrong. From his instagram posts, it appears he’s had the same pair for YEARS. And he wears them so well, their stains and scars become features and memories.

The stigma surrounding stained and scuffed plimsolls is dying. Give them more miles than just the two weeks in Spain and an occasional beer garden in summer. And if you do want to preserve the fresh look for longer, try Famaco water and stain protector - it’s superb.


Harlem description


Final word on white plimsolls

White plimsolls are an essential. They’re a black t-shirt, a denim jean, a wedding suit. Your wardrobe needs them, and so does your integrity. Their versatility and simple design pave the way for all kinds of ensembles - either loud or discreet. They’re the unsung hero of any outfit, a humble wingman. And even if you’re not into white plimsolls, there are other colours.

September 11, 2018 — Bonnie Jackson