These Pairs of Black Boots Have Got Us Thinking Ahead

black boots

The sun’s out and you can’t imagine ever needing a pair of black boots again. The human brain is funny like that. We get it, but you’re wrong. Unfortunately, summer won’t last forever and that pair of leather-soled loafers you’ve been wearing won’t look so attractive, nor will muddying the pristine white mesh of your sneaker rotation. At that point, you’ll be wishing you listened to Highsnob when they told you to look ahead and cop a pair of sturdy black boots.

We know that transitioning from lightweight sneakers to leather boots for autumn and winter is neither easy nor natural, so with the help of Luisaviaroma, we’re here to guide you through it all. We’ve rounded up selections from Raf Simons, Maison Margiela, Bottega Veneta, and more which amount to the 10 best black boots to buy right now.

Of course, with names like that, you can expect a lot more than your average pair of leather boots. We’re looking at sneaker hybrids, split-toe masterpieces, and a whole lot more. Who said black boots were boring?

When you’re in the market for a pair of bad-weather boots, you should be looking for a chunky sole unit. This pair of brushed leather Chelsea boots from Seboy’s features a rugged foundation to combat the elements.

PSA: gents, you can wear high heels too. This pair of iconic Tabi Boots is a seriously strong look for the colder months.

For every bold look, there’s a pair of understated leather boots to match. Axel Arigato keeps things very toned down with this pair which features gold branding to the heel.

Is there anything that the rollercoaster buckle doesn’t improve? Not that this pair of powerful leather boots from 1017 ALYX 9SM needed any improvement. Technical and traditional all at once.

Letting go of sneakers is a big deal, so ease the transition with the help of Bottega Veneta’s Flash Boots. A futuristic sole unit makes for a comfortable ride as well as an eye-catching contradiction to the classic leather uppers.

Like so much of Jil Sander’s output, this pair looks pretty normal at first sight. Take some time, though, and you’ll see the subtle subversions that make them so special. An elongated collar and a riveted heel tab, for example.

Loewe’s new-season take on the Chelsea boot is a functional masterpiece. A chunky rubber outsole combines with the protective leather upper for a shoe that you can beat, knowing it’ll stand up to the test.

We suggested looking ahead to autumn and winter, but Raf Simons is looking ahead to 2050. This sneaker-boot hybrid is a serious showstopper.

Rubber and neoprene form this pair of AMBUSH boots, offering a comfortable, snug fit as well as an impermeable finish. Jump in as many puddles as you like — you won’t feel a thing.

The chunky sole just won’t go away. We’re not mad though. Lanvin gives us good reason to believe it’s here to stay and deserves every minute of it.

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Burberry Wants You To Be the Flyest Person on the Blockchain

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It seems like NFTs are the next big thing in luxury fashion, and now Burberry has jumped on the bandwagon, launching its first-ever digital item as part of its B Series release.

Partnering with Mythical Games, the NFT collection is launching within Blankos Block Party, which is a multiplayer game featuring toys known as “Blankos,” who all live on a blockchain. It may seem complicated, but the digital vinyl toys provide players with proof of verified ownership and authenticity – something that’s very unique in the gaming world. Burberry is also the first luxury brand to feature in the game, opening up more opportunities for gaming and fashion to intersect.

Burberry’s NFT is a limited-quantity Blanko dubbed “Sharky B,” and is coated with the label’s new TB Summer Monogram print. It can be bought and sold within the Blankos Block Party marketplace, and Burberry will also be launching branded in-game NFT accessories including pool shoes, a jetpack, and more, that can be worn by any Blanko.

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Luxury fashion brands are starting to tap into the world of gaming, with Gucci recently collaborating with 100 Thieves, Louis Vuitton partnering with League of Legends, and now Burberry’s first NFT. “Gaming is a unique space for us to test and learn and trial digital innovations that embody our values and celebrate creativity amongst our communities,” said Rod Manley, chief marketing officer at Burberry. “With this exciting concept, we are able to unlock genuine value for the gaming community by encouraging players to interact with our brand in an environment that celebrates art, design, and exploration.”

Burberry has previously explored in-house games like its BSurf and BBounce activations but is now taking it beyond the brand and venturing further into the world of technology. You can purchase the first Burberry B Series NFT within Blankos Block Party, starting August 11 at 3 p.m. PST.

John Elliott, Master of the Low-Key Flex

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Brand: John Elliott

Season: Fall/Winter 2021

Key Pieces: The expanded range of in-house John Elliott footwear is key, expanding to include trek-ready sandals and hiking boots, and house slippers alongside the familiar black derbies and mules. There are plenty of easy layering pieces, too, including waist-length leather puffers, padded shirts, mohair cardigans, and vivid sweatpants.

Buy: Dropping weekly at John Elliott’s website and flagships; launching soon at stockists like SSENSE.

Editor’s Notes: John Elliott has proven incredibly adept at navigating flighty trends, maneuvering his eponymous Californian label through various eras of streetwear — and then post-streetwear — style.

Today, Elliott’s brand isn’t really in the realm of “streetwear” at all: though his output remains approachably casual, it’s more sophisticated, balancing easy favorites with grown-up silhouettes.

So, he still does cozy hoodies, grab-n-go shirts, and tailored sweatpants, but they’re realized with luxuriant textiles, experimental washes, and more shapely cuts.

Behold the latest round of “Pollock” jeans, layered with paint and cut with twisted seams for a curved shape. Take in the jacquard fleece jackets, woven exclusively for Elliott in Japan and designed to recall old school adventure layers.

Some things are imminently familiar to longtime followers, like the militaristic parkas inspired by the wardrobe of Elliott’s uncle — a Vietnam War vet — or gentle distressing that plays across deep-dyed jersey pants.

Seasonal all-timers, like coaches jackets and trucker jackets, are executed in versatile weatherproof nylon or suede, layered over luscious knitwear occasionally given the tie-dye treatment.

It’s all recognizable stuff: anyone who’s grown up with Elliott can add any of these mock-neck tees or puffers to their rotations with ease. But Elliott’s inherent appeal is that he can make wearable stuff that reads as stylish without demanding its wearer try to style anything too out-there. He’s concocting some adventurous stuff, sure, but it’s all grounded.

Likewise, the in-house footwear program that kicked off this past February is expanding, widening its purview beyond Vibram-soled running sneakers to encompass boots, sandals, and slippers.

Who Is Ernie Palo?

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Brand: Ernie Palo

Season: Fall/Winter 2021

Buy: DIVERSE, Jackpot, BIOTOP, CANNABIS

Editor’s Notes: Who is Ernie Palo? No one. He doesn’t exist, except in the imagination of Ryo Yamaguchi.

Yamaguchi is best known in Japan for founding edgy young label ALLEGE, but he received national attention in Spring/Summer 2021 when he debuted new label Ernie Palo, tapping into a kind of aspirational minimalism usually reserved for people who’ve worked with someone named Philo.

Ernie Palo specializes in the kind of thoughtlessly nice clothing that people would be crazy to go crazy about. Garment-dyed trucker jackets, knit polo sweaters, boxy shirts, and creased slacks in trim, uncomplicated cuts.

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Nothing revolutionary, sure, but all appreciably straightforward, demarcated by extreme quality rather than pomp or circumstance. The kind of anonymous, genderless fare that seems well suited by a brand name that doesn’t actually belong to anyone but upon closer inspection is laden with double meaning.

“The pursuit of an identity within universal creation. A product to be handed down as an archive to future generations that convey the essence of our current times.”


Ryu

The Palo in Ernie Palo, for instance, could refer to the fragrant Palo Santo wood that speaks to spiritual wellbeing.

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Overseen by thoughtful Parisian publication The Skirt Chronicles (I… liked their [work], so I asked for [their insight] this time,” Yamaguchi told Highsnobiety), Ernie Palo’s lookbook for FW21 (“Edition #02,” as it’s known) is a sun-dappled affair dipped in sepia tones.

Garmentwise, it’s a thorough exploration of the intelligent wares that Yamaguchi introduced earlier this year, epitomized by suits cut in the boxy ’90s Ralph Lauren style, accented by drop-shoulder shirts, crisp trench coats, and cropped trousers.

Not unlike the timelessly out-of-time style of so many ’80s-era films, Ernie Palo’s appreciably understated style really sneaks up you. It’s clothing for people who don’t care for fashion, preferring to seek something more substantive.

F/CE. & Converse’s New Technical Boot Is Nothing Short of Badass

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Brand: F/CE. x Converse

Model: QAK CP GORE-TEX Hi

Release Date: September 2021

Price: ¥24,200 (approximately $220)

Buy: Select Converse retailers

What We’re Saying: Before we know it, it’ll be time to break out the boots for fall and winter. If you’re in the market for a new pair — especially one for all your outdoor adventure needs — look no further than Converse’s forthcoming collaboration with F/CE., which features a badass technical boot in the QAK CP GORE-TEX Hi.





Offered in a neutral grey colorway, the F/CE. x Converse QAK CP GORE-TEX Hi is designed to make you even more active. The silhouette is lined with waterproof and breathable GORE-TEX fabrics to keep you dry no matter the activity. A detachable belt component wraps around the entire foot keeping it secure, while the wide opening provides easy on and off. The durability of the shoe is further enhanced thanks to a damage protector at the toe that is made from waterproof suede.

While out for all-day excursions, a built-in TPU shank in the midsole provides you with ample cushioning and stability, in addition to high rebound, while an open cell urethane cup insole improves both cushioning and breathability. Lastly, the QAK CP GORE-TEX Hi is outfitted with a rugged outsole featuring a deep groove design and anti-slip properties for superior grip on all surfaces.

While more than capable of handling all types of mountain adventure, F/CE. and Converse made the QAK CP GORE-TEX for urban exploration, too. The shoe is undoubtedly stylish enough to sport simply gallivanting around town. If you’re into the design, you’ll have the chance to purchase when it becomes available next month through select Converse retailers. In the meantime, hit up Highsnobiety Shop for some great Converse pairs currently up for grabs.

To stay updated on everything happening in the sneaker world, follow @highsnobietysneakers on Instagram, check out the best sneakers to add to your rotation this week, and sign up to our newsletter for the latest sneaker news sent straight to your inbox.

Want to keep browsing? Head to the Highsnobiety Shop for more products that we love. Highsnobiety has affiliate marketing partnerships, which means we may receive a commission from your purchase.

Trypophobiacs, Beware HODINKEE & Ressence’s Ultramodern Watch

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Brand: HODINKEE x Ressence Type 1 Slim HOD Limited Edition

Buy: HODINKEE for $22,500 in an edition of 20.

Editor’s Notes: When HODINKEE brings a collaborative timepiece to the table, watch watchers, well, watch. HODINKEE’s latest partnership sees Ressence coming on board for a pretty explosive twist on the watchmaker’s Type 1, taking the Antwerp-based brand’s slick original to the futuristic extreme.

Ressence’s original Type 1 was a compact vehicle for the company’s complex Ressence Orbital Convex System (ROCS), a three-dimensional pile of dials painstakingly shaped to allow for multifaceted timekeeping. HODINKEE’s spin on the Type 1 puts that technique on full display with a skeletonized dial that highlights the incredibly intricate inner workings.

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The result recalls a colorless stained glass window, a layered facade that could trigger passerby’s trypophobia (read: distaste for of dense clusters of holes). Even as a watch greenhorn, I was immediately struck by the Type 1 HOD’s textural intrigue. It doesn’t hurt — again, unless you really hate seeing tightly-packed holes — that the watch comes packaged in a clever foam sphere informed by Ressence’s “Beyond Hands” logo.

Still, given that I’m not a watch snob, I figured it’d be worth having one weigh in. And who better than Mr. Snob himself?

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“I really love [Ressence] for its innovation in an otherwise dusty and old-school market,” Highsnobiety founder & CEO David Fischer told me. “This specific piece seems like a really interesting dial design and I also like the fact that it’s a slim version because I’m into thin watches at the moment.”

Indeed, HODINKEE’s bespoke Type 1 is even slimmer than the usual Ressence Type 1. It’s pretty miraculous that Ressence’s Swiss craftspeople can fit ROCS into such a neat little package — the windowlike facade only underscores the magic.

Louis Vuitton, Bulgari & More Drop Kris Wu After Sexual Assault Detention

Former EXO member Kris Wu was detained in China on August 2 following accusations of sexual assault on Chinese social media platform Sina Weibo. Since the information was shared by a user with the handle “Du Meizhu” last month, Wu has been dropped by several big brands, including Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, and Porsche.

The Weibo user claimed that she was sexually assaulted by Kris Wu at the age of 17, while she was a student at the Communication University of China in Beijing, and also explained that the K-pop star had been using the same methods with other girls. Following several investigations by the police, after the story surfaced, the star was detained but has not yet been formally charged.

“I don’t believe this is just my own personal matter. You can even say that this is a problem with the atmosphere in China’s entertainment circle,” Du Meizhu said in an interview with NetEase.

Of course, the social media post gained a lot of traction both in China and around the world, leading to multiple brands taking a stance against the singer and cutting ties with him.

“Louis Vuitton takes the recent accusations concerning Mr. Kris Wu very seriously and as such suspends its collaboration with the artist until the investigation is concluded,” the luxury house told CNN.

Wu’s Weibo account — where he initially responded to the claims stating that they were false in front of his 51 million followers — was taken down following his detention. Chinese music platforms have also removed his songs.

The case has become one of the biggest conversations in China, where there’s been less progress around the #MeToo movement than we’ve seen worldwide. There have been multiple experiences by women that were brave enough to come forward, where they were met with pushback, so activists and social media users have been quick to support Du Meizhu in her claims. Wu’s detention also came as a surprise to many, as victims of sexual abuse usually have a difficult time pursuing justice.

Kris Wu has yet to be formally charged and there’s yet no information available as to the status of the case.

If you have been sexually harassed or assaulted, there are resources to help you.

Donate to Rape Crisis here (UK) or RAINN here (U.S.).