In 2017, the sneaker we now call the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star will turn 100 years old. Brief history lesson: Chuck Taylor was a real person—a basketball player who was also a salesman for Converse. In 1921, he joined a sponsored team called The Converse All Stars ... and you can fill in the rest. By the 1960s, the Chuck Taylor was being worn by virtually every professional and college basketball player in the game.
As sneaker technology and design evolved, the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star transitioned into the preferred leisure footwear of the creative subculture—especially artists and musicians. Everyone, from Elvis to Kurt Cobain, has worn these sneakers, more or less securing their iconic status for generations to come.
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More than any other shoe you can probably name off the top of your head, Converse Chuck Taylors seem to complement every avenue of personal style from punk to prep. The bright white canvas version has remained the most ubiquitous in both its low-top and high-top silhouettes, but today you can find them in a rainbow of colors and fabrications.
The universal appeal of these sneakers is especially apparent during Fashion Week events from New York to Paris, when editors, buyers, and bloggers can all be seen putting their very personal twist on these cool kicks. To prove just how versatile they are, we rounded up 20 different outfits to illustrate that you really can wear your Converse Chuck Taylors with just about anything.
1. Unusual Color Combinations
Pair deep red sneakers with a hot pink slip dress and denim jacket.
2. Leather and Chunky Knits
Dress down leather leggings with a boxy turtleneck and white low-tops.
3. Bohemian Suede
Black kicks look cool with a mini dress and retro-inspired suede jacket.
4. Double Denim
Converse and denim might be the most natural pairing of all.
5. The French Girl Look
A longline coat and jaunty silk scarf add a sophisticated twist to the jeans-and-sneakers combo.
6. Layer Up in Leather
A leather jacket adds a little rock-and-roll edge.
7. Everyday Easy
Ripped jeans, a cozy knit, and kicks—the perfect fall errands outfit.
8. Flower Girl
Red sneakers dress down a lacy gown and statement coat.
9. Mixed Prints
Try wearing camo and classic stripes together.
10. Collegiate Cool
Try wearing low-top Converse with sheer, feminine socks.
11. Proportion Play
Ground a boxy shirtdress with Converse and an oversize bag.
12. Go Girly
A funky pair of printed Converse looks sweet with a voluminous mini skirt and a playful purse.
13. Winter Black And Whites
Offset an all-white ensemble with black accessories.
14. The Classic
With jeans and a button-down shirt? That's a no-brainer.
15. Festival Ready
In the heat of summer all you need is a pair of cut-off shorts and an off-the-shoulder top.
16. Ecclectic Mix
Downplay your statement-making outfit with everyday footwear.
17. The Capsule Wardrobe
This is one outfit formula we have on repeat.
18. So '90s
Why not go full throwback in an overall skirt, cropped top, and high-tops?
19. Streamlined Midi
Converse makes for the perfect complement to body-skimming knit dresses.
20. Dressed Down LWD
Punchy orange Converse offset the feminine charm of a semi-sheer little white dress.