Some trends begin on the runway, drifting down from a designer’s lofty imagination. But plenty of others bubble up from the street, birthed by a combination of practicality and fierce insouciance. Such it was with the elevation of the sneaker—first, women defied convention, wearing their sneaks to commute to and from work but changing into dreary, respectable pumps once they hit the office. But then, with a collective sigh of “What the Hell?” heard around the world, it just got too boring to change your footwear every day. Suddenly, trainers began finding their way into more respectable society—accompanying a sundress, maybe lending a goofy note to a pencil skirt, or even daring to peak out from beneath the frothiest of frocks—as if Cinderella headed off to the ball in her Nikes and forgot to change into those glass slippers. (Bet those things hurt, anyway!)

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Now, at the height of the holiday party season, we dare you to do likewise and flaunt your independent spirit by pairing your sportiest, clunkiest friends with a shimmering silver mini, a frankly crazy full-on Gucci ensemble, or a Molly Goddard turquoise tulle extravaganza. (Rihanna, a Goddard fan, did this, and doesn’t she always look gorgeous?)

Think about it: Do you really want to spend even one more party with your feet on fire? The audacity of sneakers with your evening frock will tell the world you are your own woman—and, bonus points! —you’ll be able to walk all the way home on gridlock alert days, while your friends languish in a crawling Uber.

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