Part of the fun of fashion is making a statement and the other half is comfort (with a bit of simply feeling good because you look good!). While browsing the selection of shoes at PF Flyers I saw a ton of different options that looks great. There was a mixture of big bold designs as well as more classic looks.
As I browsed their collection, I began to think, "maybe I should step outside my comfort zone and try something new." After all, I have a bunch of shoes already and I've always been pretty conservative with my fashion choices. In highschool, I literally would buy 2-3 pairs of the same shoes so that when one wore out I wouldn't have to switch and find something new. Totally lame, I know! Today though - thanks to my wife, I am a bit better - I just go from one pair of brown or black shoes to the next. However, it's time to try something new so I decided to throw caution to the wind and check out these Center Hi Mono shoes in Red.
PF Flyers also have them in a much more conservative black and brown, but that's for a different story.
In fact, if I had been going with my normal self, these Ramblers above would have been fantastic (while this was an awesome chance to try something new, I'm a little sad I didn't grab these while I had the chance ... I might have to go buy them on my own though :)).
While these shoes may look like they are made for hipsters wearing skinny jeans, the company itself is not a new company. In fact, it's origins go back as far as 1933 when BF Goodrich patented the "Posture Foundation" insole. By 1937, the company consolidated several of its footwear lines under the brand P-F. In the 1950's and 60's the brand continued to grow and Bob Cousy of the Boston Celtics made them even more popular on the court. The shoes were even standard issue for the US Army. More recently you may remember them from The Sandlot movie. Unfortunately, due to a number of mergers and acquisitions, the brand faded for a number of years until New Balance relaunched the brand in 2003. You can read more of the story on their website.
While they have always had a cult following, now you can buy a piece of history and look good while doing it.
So, I had the choice - do I do what I would normally do and go for black, tan, or white or do I try something different?
Doing the same as everyone else is always boring. Sure, it's a safe choice, but people don't remember the guy with brown wingtips. What they DO remember is the guy with bright red shoes. In fact, a guy I used to work with had bright red shoes like these and it was part of his overall style. It showed that while he might have been wearing otherwise conservative khaki pants or jeans, shirt, and jacket he was still fun, forward thinking, and innovative.
So, with that in mind I surprised my wife and bought the shoes. Reaction on my private Facebook profile was "mixed" to say the least. I wasn't surprised since this particular style and color combination is meant to make a statement. After all, you never attract attention by doing what they expect you to do.
For shoes that throw back to a 70+ year old design heritage, they were surprisingly comfortable and while I probably would select a different model to go running or play basketball, they are plenty comfortable for a night out with my wife, or walking around during the day. The soles though were very thin compared to "sneakers", but unless you are going to be on your feet all day, that won't be a problem.
I encourage you to break out of your comfort zone and try something new. Don't follow my exact choice - but browse the PF Flyers site and find a pair of shoes that will help you make a statement.
Trying something new is something we don't get to do that often, so here's your chance to take a step into the unknown and "Unfollow the Crowd", so shop now!