You could, like the song says, get your kicks on Route 66. Or you could head out to one of the local shops carrying a range of shoes that take their cue from the soccer field, basketball court, running track, or skateboard park. There is no shortage of high-performance footwear coming out this fall. In fact, more and more, the athletic-shoe industry seems to mirror the automotive cabal, with new and innovative functional features debuting each new season.
Look to Headquarter (1232 Burrard Street), which carries the new Mocassine ($140) from the limited-edition Off the Wall collection by Vans in black leather with a white rim. The tongue depicts a skull wearing a cigar-store-statue-style Native American headdress. Or, from Adidas, an acid trip for your feet: bright orange and turquoise runners ($145) with a faux snakeskin motif. A soccer-inspired army-green leather skate shoe with brown accents from Nike, Joga Bonita ($200), continues the snakeskin theme.
Umeboshi (3638 Main Street) provides a range of sleek athletic-style shoes from Medium Design Group, such as the leather-and-canvas Optimist ($150) in beige and brown with red accents, and Protagonist ($182), which refines the classic court sneaker by blending suede and full-grain leather in gradations of brown.