I'm just going to start this blog post off by being completely honest. I am a Sperry addict. It's a serious problem. It's to the point where I hide the boxes when I bring them home so my mother doesn't give me that look as if to say "really? another pair?" Some say I have too many, I say you can never have enough.
So with that love (and years clocked at Fogh in the shoe section) I have been given the title of Sperry aficionado by my colleagues at Fogh Marine. So here I am to help guide you through the world of Sperry Top-Sider with my personal tips and favourite picks to help you choose the best pair of Sperry's for you and/or your loved ones.
Whether you know them as Top-Sider’s, Sperry’s or boat shoes, one thing is for sure – Sperry Top Sider’s have been a staple in the boating culture and shoe industry since 1935. Why are they so popular? The grip, comfort and durability. Plus the assortment of styles that these shoes come in means that you’re sure to find one that matches your style and needs. Additionally, they last for years…but that doesn’t mean you can’t have more than one pair.
Over the years Sperry has expanded their line of shoes from the Authentic Original to flip-flops, water shoes, performance shoes, rain boots, knee-high boots, heels, and wedges - yes ladies I said wedges. Sperry Top-Sider wedges are AMAZING – so comfortable and easy to walk in with incredible grip – great for all day wear! No slipping or falling, plus they come in tons of great designs.
With that said, there are so many styles and options that it can sometimes be overwhelming when trying to decide which pair you like better, fits better or will suit your needs best; especially if you're shopping online. Let's break it down into the most common and popular styles from Sperry.
Authentic Originals (A/O)
“Since 1935, these shoes have been the staple for those with a Passion for the Sea. The Authentic Original combines classic comfort and enduring style for a timeless look that works season after season, and year after year.”
The Classic & Iconic boat shoe since 1935. The Authentic Original collection from Sperry is one of their most popular and well-known styles; a favourite among sailors and boaters for generations. Available for both men and women, they come in tons of colours, textures and designs - something for everyone. Regardless of what colour or design you pick, the features never change or disappear.
Every pair of A/O's has non-marking soles and great grip thanks to the Razor-Cut Wave-Siping™ sole design. They also ensure a secure fit thanks to the 360° Lacing System™. Plus, if you decide on a leather pair, it's stain and water resistant leather! A/O’s can be dressed down or up for any occasion. Seriously, they go with everything and anything. A must have for every sailor or shoe lover.
Louisa's Tip: I'd recommend the A/O's for just about anything. Why? Because they work with everything - they're effortless, classy and sophisticated. Something which is hard to find in a good pair of shoes these days. The A/O's are great for everyday wear, looking snazzy for sail past, casual sails, a night on the town or as your "go-to" dress shoes for all occasions. Wether it's the classic brown, Navy or all black, the A/O's finish off any outfit for any occasion.
"Sturdy and rugged boat shoes feature 360° lacing for more stability. Their air mesh and perforated upper panels, along with enhanced shock-absorbing soles, help feet stay comfortable all day — whether they're on deck or shore."
The Billfish is like the big brother to the Authentic Original. It's a bit more shoe than the A/O and has more stability thanks to the all around lacing. More shoe doesn't mean it's clunkier though, the Billfish is just as stylish and sleek for everyday wear - be it casual or dress. The Billfish is packed with great features:
A modern twist on a classic! The Billfish Ultralite, which was released this past summer from Sperry, is the newest addition to the Billfish family. Just as it's name implies, the Ultralite is lightweight - 25% lighter than the original Billfish to be exact. All the same features and benefits of the classic Billfish, just 25% lighter!
"Style never looked this effortless. Sperry's vulcanized products provide a stylish, no-slip grip for every possible adventure. Look for seasonal updates with the hottest materials and prints!"
The Striper is another favourite among sailors. Why? It's simple, no fuss and easy to slip on and off. Plus they're comfortable. Made of Cotton, they are still breathable and comfortable for those warm summer days full of adventure. They feature a padded tongue and collar for added comfort around the foot, great grip thanks to the Rubber Outsole with Razor Cut Wave-Siping™ for Ultimate Dry / Wet Traction AND they won't mark the deck! An effortless shoe that's ready for whatever adventures the sea or lake throws at you. These are also available in a slip-on style without laces.
Louisa's Tip: To help break your Sperry's in wear them around the house for a couple of hours. This will loosen up the leather and help prevent blisters the first time you wear them out.
"Whether you're on board or on shore, Bluefish boat shoes really step up. Choose from vibrant seasonal colors, trend-friendly prints — even glitter! Your feet will look great. They'll thank you too, for the comfy cushioning, especially on those days when sitting just isn't an option."
This style is great for those who want to be able to tie their shoes tight for a snug fit or those who have a wide foot. The look of traditional boat shoes with the grip, comfort and durability that is unique to Sperry Top-Sider.
Louisa’s Top-Pick: These are my go-to shoes for everyday wear. They’ve lasted through cleaning out the basement, cleaning the boat, walking around campus, airports, vacations and moving in and out of apartments. They mold to your feet, which makes wearing them all day that much better – no blisters or aches and pains - even with my wide feet! A MUST HAVE for all women; these shoes will not let you down. I bought my first pair of Bluefish and then immediately bought two more, plus a pair for my mom – I can’t get enough.
Seriously, I live in my leopard and black pair of Bluefish.
"Meet Angelfish. She's the kid sister to Sperry favorite, Bluefish. This season discover super-fun animal prints, nautical accents, glitter and sequins. They make Angelfish the perfect choice for weekend escapes or heading across the quad on weekdays."
The perfect shoe for slipping on and off while getting on the boat or heading out for everyday life. The great thing about the Angelfish is that they're stylish and comfortable but still have support for all day wear. For those who don't like to have a large tongue on their shoes the Angelfish style is a fantastic choice!
Louisa's Style Tip: The Angelfish look great with a pair of skinny jeans rolled up just a tad and a button down shirt - cute, classy and comfy! Going out for the night? Don't be afraid to rock a pair of Sperry's either! Dress the Angelfish up with an easy breezey summer dress or shorts and a boyfriend blazer! The Angelfish transition effortlessly from day to night with any outfit!
New season coming up? or want a quick change without a whole new pair of shoes? Sperry has got you covered. Great thing about Spery's is that you can replace or switch up the laces anytime you like with the lacing kits (available on Sperry's website). Lacing kits come in a variety of colours and are available with or without the needle.
Ooo baby! It’s like walking on a cloud when a pair of Gold Cup's are on your feet. The soft Lambskin lining makes the Gold Cup Collection shoes la crème de la crème of Sperry Top-Sider shoes. The soft deerskin makes walking in these puppies feel like heaven. With the clean cut edges, soft details, and overall classic feel Gold Cup's are perfect for a night out on the town, sail past, or afternoon brunch with friends. Helps you keep that nautical lifestyle going even after you've stepped off the boat. These shoes are extremely comfortable and luxurious. Once you try a pair on, you’ll be hooked.
The Gold Cup Collection is available for a variety of styles like the Authentic Original and Gold Cup ASV 2-Eye Boat Shoe.
Authentic Original Gold Cup: " The iconic boat shoe elevates style to the next level as part of the Gold Cup Collection. Their finely tooled premium leather uppers are sewn by hand and lined with luxuriously soft Lambskin. Hand-burnished leathers, unique color combinations, contrasts on soles and in laces, along with distinctive details like 18k gold-plated eyelets set these boat shoes oceans apart."
Gold Cup ASV Amaretto: " The perfect blend of craftsmanship and performance makes these boat shoes truly stand out. Premium leather uppers are sewn by hand and are lined with luxurious Lambskin. Seasonal style updates feature hand-burnished leathers and unique color combinations. In addition to their fine workmanship, these boat shoes come equipped with Sperry's patented ASV Technology™, which reduces shock and vibration up to 30%. This distinctive combination of design and innovation provides long-lasting comfort for a day on the boat and classic style when you're off the water."
The Gold Cup Collection is now available in women's! Woo Hoo! After all these years of waiting, ladies it's our turn for some Gold Cups.
Louisa's Tip: Keep the cloth bag your Gold Cup's come in and use it as a travel bag for any of your Sperry's when you go on vacation, a business trip or when you're not using them! This helps keep them looking fresh for longer and helps prevent any scratches from happening during travel.
With so many styles, colours and textures available from Sperry Top-Sider it's hard for us to carry them all. Don't see the style or colour that you were hoping for? Give us a call with the style number and size you were looking for and Fogh Marine will try their best to bring it in for you.*
No matter where your "Passion for the Sea" takes you, Sperry Top-Siders can take you there.
*Not all styles are available in Canada.