If you thought your closet was well-stocked with sneakers, think again. Todd Snyder and P.F. Flyers have teamed up to launch your ideal fall sneakers, and they’re a seasonal must-have. Thankfully for menswear fans everywhere, the results of the partnership between the lauded American menswear designer and the iconic American sneaker brand are better than ever.
This particular iteration of Todd Snyder + P.F. Flyers — which builds off past seasonal efforts such as the Nubuck Rambler Low — brings you the Grounder Hi-Top, a slick, city-ready sneaker available in black or olive canvas as of this week. Between the military-grade 14oz. canvas upper, the gunmetal eyelets and lace tips — not to mention the pigskin leather lining — it’s a decidedly modern update of a classic P.F. Flyers style from the brand’s extensive archives.
The design is the perfect way to pay homage to the decades-long heritage of P.F. Flyers, Snyder said in a recent interview.
“They kind of embody one of the most iconic sneaker brands out there,” Snyder said while offering a sneak peek of the new sneaker at his well-appointed NYC showroom. “They’re shoes that my father and grandfather would’ve worn.”
For Snyder, the partnership has personal roots. He’s grown close over the last few years with the P.F. Flyers team and Chris Tobias, the brand’s global merchandise manager — Snyder’s love of vintage styles and military heritage was a natural fit to launch the partnership, now in its third year.
“Todd’s personal passion for vintage (product) and storytelling” helped bring the Grounder to life, Tobias said. When Snyder saw the original version of the Grounder during a visit to P.F. Flyers’ offices in Boston about two years ago, he knew the style needed to be brought into the 21st century.
“I realized we have to show (consumers) what we have here,” Snyder said. “It’s such an honor, because you get to play with their history.”
And the history of the style upon which the Grounder is based is extensive. That original sneaker rose up out of post-World War II roots in America, combining a canvas upper with a rugged outsole for customers who needed something that would last longer than an everyday pair of footwear, Tobias said. Those durable, timeless roots stuck with Snyder, who’s deemed it the “sandlot sneaker” for its throwback aesthetic, sporty looks and unique longevity.
In addition to the crisp high-top silhouette, both the olive and black versions feature a new tailored last and lined toe bumper, an additional functional touch that creates clean lines and a sharp look, Tobias said.
The brand’s comfort-centric technology provided the perfect platform for Snyder to update the style.
The all-black version — right down to the flat wax laces — can easily be paired with slim black denim for a dressy, downtown-ready look, Snyder said. And the olive canvas pair is the perfect contrast to off-white jeans or chinos
The partnership between the two brands will be displayed prominently when Snyder opens his first NYC flagship this fall; in the meantime, Snyder & P.F. Flyers are already hard at work on designs for both next fall and spring.
Customers will have to busy themselves with picking up the Grounder Hi-Top until then — while pairs are around, that is.