Monday, 30 June 2014

Keds, the Classic Tennis . . .

Classic Choices

Closet Content Analysis: Classic Tennis

NICE             NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY           NEED             NEW

Photo by Brian Davis - the Keds Era.
While in France, the shoe that is often referred to as runners, sneakers or joggers are known as "tennis" (TE-neece).

NEED: I want, I need the classic "Ked-style" tennis shoe because the ones I love have "bit the big one"! Mine are an old style that I loved - the third from the left on Brian's photograph. Later varieties had wider toe boxes and rounder toe caps. I have another pair bought two or three years later that looked more like the second from the right. I didn't like the look on my foot near as much as my first pair. I think I bought both pairs at The Bay in Canada. I attempted to wear them this year but soon found that neither would be fit outside of the garden. In fact I threw away the first purchased ones in disgust. 

Brian (of ballet flats fame renown on this blog) and I have recently discovered a kindred love of Keds; albeit he has now outgrown that part of his shoe life.

Photo by Brian Davis - the Keds Era, circa 2008.
NOTE-WORTHY: When you find a classic "something" you love, buy it in multiples. Brian has embraced that bit of advice. I haven't and although I recommend it, somehow it eludes me.

Brian's first time buying Keds story is similar to his first time buying ballet flats. story. The canvas Keds' knockoffs were everywhere as he recalls. . . 

I still remember when I was 7 years old, I needed a pair of white shoes for badminton. There were two choices at the local KMart. Keds knockoffs or another one which was a bit more rugged looking. My mom let me pick the one I wanted - Keds knockoffs of course! Many more years went by and girls continued to wear these canvas shoes, which now had a blue label on the heel. Then came the leather Keds - they sparked my interest. . . . One day while at the mall I noticed the most amazing display of women's white leather Keds at the Lady Footlocker. I stood and stared and my heart began to race. After several minutes I entered the store, grabbed a display shoe and asked the sales girl if she had them in a size 10. A moment later she came from the back and asked if I needed to see them or did I just want to pay for them. With a lump in my throat, I said, "I'd like to try them on". She immediately informed me that these were girls' shoes. She handed me the box and walked away. I tried them on (without her help) and then bought them. It was a pretty quiet sales transaction.

NICE but not NEED: I will be looking but not too hard for the Keds style "tennis" while in France. 

Another NOTE-WORTHY: It seems that whatever colour jeans French women are wearing, their "tennis" match exactly - ah, but that's another post . . .  


  1. The keds shoes are really nice :)

    Svetlana from Lavender Star // BlogLovin //
    Instagram // Faceboook

    1. I agree! Merci bien for commenting.

  2. I just saw some at Costco in Saskatoon...

    1. Thanks for sharing your observation. I saw them too before I left Canada. The Keds at Costco have a wider and rounder toe cap and shoe box than I prefer. I'm looking for a narrower toe cap and box similar to the earlier Keds styles.

  3. Thanks for including me in this post, I love working together with you. You have rekindled my love for these shoe. Much like my ballet flats, when I found a pair I liked, I bought them. I do have several pairs of colourful canvas Keds but the white leather Keds were always my favorite. They were easy to keep clean and therefore always sparkling white. The shoe itself has a non-clunky looking sleek appearance. Perfect for my style.

    1. Love those white leather Keds but I can't believe that you would put the ballet flats aside in preference to the Keds. Presently I am looking for a red pair of canvas Keds-style sneakers but they must be the exact tone of red that my pants are. I'm planning to do do a post on matching since that is the "thing" that French women do. The men match too but it's the "pull" that matches something else in the ensemble or the belt that matches the shoes. Interesting . . . we in North America tend not to match to the same extent.

  4. I'm presently on vacation in Arizona and while shopping yesterday I saw something that reminded me of this post. No doubt a pair of Keds, right! This sparkling white pair of Keds was not in a store window but rather were being worn. Cuz I'm a bit of a Keds nut, I'm familiar with Keds and how they've changed over the years. I put my Tory flats in high gear and walked faster so I could get a better look at these sparkling white Keds. They were being worn with a cute pair of ankle sock and a pair of capris. As I got closer I was able to confirm they were leather, they had the standard blue tag on the heel, 4 eyelets and no other Keds tags or markings. The era for this style is late 90's or early 2000's, similar to the pair on the far right in my Keds photo above. I couldn't get over how bright the leather was and just the overall look paired with ankle socks and capris. I casually walked behind thinking about the good old days when I was wearing my Keds. I went from daydreaming to shock when they stopped to look in a store front window. All along I "assumed" it was a female I was following but in reality it was a young man. I never had any thought of talking to the person when I assumed it was a women. Now looking back I wish I would have talked to him and applaud him for his choice of fashion and his vintage women's Keds.

    1. There's something about that shape - like it was more tailored. I so want a pair of white leather Keds like the ones I had circa 2000. After that the toe became more rounded and just didn't do it for me anymore. My 2000 Keds have been relegated to the garden and sit in the garden shed in France. I have never seen a pair as tailored as those were. Sigh . . .


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