It’s easy to assume that it’s more fun and exciting for brides-to-be to get ready for the big day, but there are, in fact, just as many interesting decisions for the grooms-to-be. On Tuesday night, Sonam Kapoor-Ahuja’s husband Anand Ahuja had everyone taking notice of his silver Nike sneakers with his black achkan (an assortment of bandhgala, waistcoat and kurta) as he arrived at his wedding reception party at The Leela, Mumbai.

It didn’t come as a surprise to family and close friends of the 35-year-old entrepreneur, as he co-owns the Delhi-based multi-brand sneaker store, VegNonVeg. Last year, he also featured in GQ India’s list of biggest sneakerheads of Instagram, alongside actors Shah Rukh Khan and Varun Dhawan. “His choice of combining sneakers with heritage clothing was completely his own—interestingly adding a new paradigm to the versatility of what the bandhgala or achkan have to offer as a look," says Indian ethnic-wear designer Raghavendra Rathore, who designed Ahuja’s wedding wardrobe.

Mumbai-based stylist Nitasha Gaurav, who exclusively styles actor Ranveer Singh, feels Ahuja wore something that brings him joy. “A lot of grooms get overwhelmed by what they are supposed to wear for the functions, and, sometimes, lose sight of what they enjoy wearing. What Ahuja has done is held on to his personal style. He is someone who is in the sneaker business—and it’s great that he didn’t give in to what a groom is expected to wear with a bandhgala!"

Once associated with students and TV show host Ellen DeGeneres, the sneaker culture is now making its presence felt even in boardrooms. Rathore says, “The sneaker culture is a genre in its own right, and is no longer perceived as pariah footwear for business suits in boardrooms."

However, a few things need to be kept in mind while combining a formal look with cool kicks. “The style of the sneaker has to suit the body frame. The rest depends on your personality and confidence. Pair it with whatever you like, formal trousers or jeans. The future of fashion is extremely personalized," adds Rathore.

And if you’re wearing sneakers with suits for work, ensure the suit is slim-fit and choose a simple design with distinct yet subdued colours.

Sneakers to pair with your work wardrobe

Vans Chima Pro
Rs5,999

Available in navy blue, black and grey, the Chima Pro has a very soft upper, with a subtle pattern. It’s comfortable too.

Nike Classic Cortez Nylon
Rs6,495

The textile upper has a very smooth finish. The shoe is available in as many as six colour options. The outsole has a herringbone design for extra grip.

Puma Tsugi Apex Evoknit
Rs8,999

Grey usually isn’t considered the liveliest colour. Puma, however, has used it well to make this shoe look sophisticated. The foam stripe on the side lends it a unique look.

—By Vishal Mathur

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