Of course a lace swap won't work with every single pair of sneakers and sometimes swapping laces could do more damage than not to the overall aesthetics. Some sneakers these days come with more than one set of laces that enables you to swap them out at your leisure. What I've found is that overall lace choices straight out of the design studios are quite conservative. They're usually tonal to the main colourway of the sneakers and sometimes a contrasting lace colour, or even keeping it in the theme but using a lesser featured colourway from the sneakers does wonders.
The first pair to be featured in the lace swap series was not the first pair that was subjected to the swap, but it was probably one that benefited the most from it, and a pair that was only purchased with the view to swapping out the laces immediately as the effect was quite dramatic after a quick photoshop of images found on the web.
The kicks: Ewing 33 Hi White Gum (2013 Retro)
I've had fond memories of Ewing shoes, as I had them back in high school. Although they were a second choice to my first wish of Jordans. Of course, at the time parents will not and did not fork out the sort of money charged by Jordans for a pair of sneakers so I went with Ewings with similar looks. When Ewings came back, I wasn't too keen on them in the first place, but when they released the Georgetown colourway (navy blue/grey) I was smitten, and given pricing was very reasonable (compared to Jordans) I bought a pair, and could not get over how comfortable they are! I mean, sure, I'm not going to wear them playing basketball, but they were great for casual wear, and offers a good point of difference to the plethora of Jordans/Nikes out there on the streets.
|Lace swap with mustard coloured laces to match the gum sole|
|Navy laces to give it a bit more contrast|
The 33 Hi was the first "in-house" design Ewings (The very first Ewings were pre-existing designs with "Patrick Ewing" slapped on them). The design is very much of the day- huge and chunky with a massively fat tongue. As I mentioned before, the price point was reasonable, and you do get a lot of shoes for your money. However, not all Ewing Retros were created the same. The Georgetown 33 Hi I had were made much better than the White Gum version. In particular the "panel gap" was quite shocking. Didn't line up. Some stitching were off too, and good thing this pair only had gum soles. Some of the other versions where there were colours painted on, they couldn't even keep within the lines! It almost felt as if after the successful relaunch of the brand they rushed to get more shoes out into the market and as a consequence, quality suffered.
|Here you can see the panels aren't even cut straight, and there seems to be stitching mistakes|
|Here the stitching isn't tidied up, and again, what looks like stitching mistakes|
In terms of fitting the 33 Hi is made very big. I find the "true to size" a misnomer. All the shoes fit quite differently, and as always, would recommend trying on the shoes for yourself, rather than relying on "true to size" on websites. For me personally, the 33 Hi I'm a US size 11, with plenty of toe wriggling room. As a comparison, I'm a size 11.5 in Air Force 1, and size 12 in Jordan CP3.VI.
The lace swap:
The Ewing 33 Hi White gum originally comes with white straps, making the shoe all white with the exception of the gum sole, and a bit of white painted area on the mid sole. To me, due to the way the mid sole is designed, there are chunky sections of gum, and to me that looked a little weird compared to the all-white top. It needed something to balance it out, and the mustard colour laces off the Ewing Guard was chosen to match the gum sole, giving it a bit more balance colour-wise. Dark navy laces were also trialled for a bigger contrast, and I find myself undecided between the two. For the time being it's on the mustard colour to match #OOTD but I reckon the navy might go on at some point, and I'd also like to try red laces, since white goes with everything.