Dear Britalian :
I am intrigued : why did you insert the Latin word "sic" in the second paragraph of your post ?
Now, let us talk about trainers (or, if you will, sneakers) . I abhor, generally speaking (of which more below), the inappropriate - i.e., qua street-wear - use of trainers ; infact, during the course of a newspaper interview concerning my shoe collection, which I gave some years ago, I went so far as to state that I shouldn't give a woman a second glance if I discovered that she was wearing trainers (outside the gym or track, obviously) . My feelings of disgust are due, I must confess, in large measure to the fact that having been transplanted (kicking and screaming) by my cruel parents from Rome to London when I was 15, I have been forced to endure decades-long visual pollution and the most egregious sartorial crimes imaginable, all perpetrated by a belligerent and barbaric people known as the English . Oh, how I've suffered (and continue to suffer) . I cannot, for example, think of the 80's, without being transported to an Oxford Street positively formicating with a vast sea of ugly people, wearing ugly clothes and eating ugly fast food . It seemed that every man under the age of 35 wore a brown antiqued leather jacket, white T-shirt, (horror of horrors) 'snow-washed' jeans and, yes, ugly, white, scuffed trainers . The final touch of authenticity was accomplished by an acne-scarred face .
Worse was to come : for reasons best known to themseves - I do not, unfortunately, hold a degree in deviant psychology - parents and grand-parents joined in ! No weekend was complete without the sight of 'leisure-suited' couples at retail malls - often in matching 'shell-suits' . (The horror, the horror .)
Having said this, I whole-heartedly approve of so-called 'hybrids' ; you know the ones - half shoe, half trainer - particularly when made by upscale Italian shoe manufacturers such as Pantofola d'Oro, Santoni, Etro, et al . I have enjoyed for at least the last six years the eccentric classiness of mating lounge suits - not the most formal, of course - with brown (antiqued calf or reverse-calf) hybrids . But then, I enjoy striking at least one dissonant note in my ensemble : that dissonance might come from wearing (simultaneously) two pochettes or wearing a linen scarf instead of a tie or wearing a summer (linen or cotton) suit without hose .
What is important is to : (1) know the rules (the classical canon established in the 30's) ; (2) know when and how to break them ; (3) always do it with 'taste' .