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Common Projects Men’s Achilles Low Top Sneakers

What Are Common Projects

Worth It? Common Projects Achilles Low

Common Projects is a shoe brand that has amassed a following amongst sneaker heads. Their Achilles line started a minimalist sneaker craze.

The brainchild of an art director and brand consultant, Common Projects runs a bare-bones operation. With no marketing to speak of and a barely functional site, the brand has made its way into the luxury shoe space through word of mouth.

Made in Italy with hand-selected calfskin leather, these sneakers are like wine they get better with age. Theyve become so popular that stockists are having trouble keeping them around, even with a $400 price tag.

Not looking to drop that kind of scratch for a simple white sneaker?

Here are our favorites that will get you the look while leaving a little left in your wallet.

Common Projects Resort Classic Sneakers

Taking a fresh approach to the brands classic BBall style, these Resort Classic Sneakers feature grid stitching and perforated toe boxes yet still feel classic and sleek. Made in Italy, each leather-lined pair sits on durable rubber soles and comes with the signature gold serial numbers that make it instantly recognizable as Common Projects. Expect everything from suede-trimmed to two-toned and shearling-lined iterations.

Converse Chuck 70 Sneaker

Looks-wise, the Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star has hardly changed at all since it first hit the hardwood in the early 1920s. In terms of construction, though, the no-frills GOAT hit its peak in the 70s: the canvas upper was weightier, the rubber midsole rode up a little higher, the toe cap was a touch smaller, and the patch on the back of the heel was a cool retro black rather than the standard white. A few years back, Converse decided to make them that way again. For a cool $85, the Chuck 70 gets you all those key design upgrades, plus the benefit of modern cushioning installed into the thicker vintage outsoles. Theyre the same Chucks youve always loved, only better.

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Common Projects Original Achilles Sneakers

Launched in 2004, Common Projects Original Achilles Sneakers have stood the test of time. Designed to work well with both tailoring and casual outfits alike, these lace-up tennis sneakers are expertly crafted from leather or suede and come stamped with a gold serial number. They are available in both low-top and high-top silhouettes, and come in a variety of colorways.

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The Common Projects Sneakers Sizing Guide

Common Projects Men

Not sure what size you are in Common Projects sneakers? The brand uses European sizing, and you will be able to find your corresponding mens size in UK and US sizing in the below chart.

For example, if you typically wear a mens UK 9 or a US 10, you should buy your Common Projects sneakers in a size 43.

EU
  • Thick, good quality Italian rubber
  • Stitched and cemented to upper with Stroebel stitching
  • More durable than standard sneaker construction

The upper is attached to a one-piece rubber Margom sole, which can take a beating without crumbling and wearing away like most sneaker soles its really thick and great quality Italian rubber, with Gear Patrolcalling Margom,

a revered Italian brand creates many of the outsoles for top luxury footwear brands because they genuinely are the best of the best.

Its attached with whats called sidewalk stitching or Stroebel construction, a mixture of cementing and stitching which is super rare. Most sneakers have the sole glued, on this is glued andstitched, with the stitching being the main method of attachment. That means maybe, possibly you could get these resoled when the time comes. Maybe.

More importantly, as I mentioned earlier, it means that with age you wont get holes around the toe break like every other sneaker you own.

  • Thick, soft leather footbed
  • Surprisingly heavy sole

There are four reasons the fit & sizing is a bit of a pain in the ass with Common Projects:

  • No half sizes.
  • They only use European sizes.
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    Nike Air Force 1 07 Sneaker

    All real sneakerheads know that black Air Force 1s are a bad omenif you see someone in them, it means you should turn and run. White Air Force 1s, on the other hand, are a sign of nothing beyond the wearers very fine taste. Since 1982, when they were introduced as Nikes first basketball shoe to feature its revolutionary Air tech, the AF1 has held it down as the Swooshs single most reliable model. Its hardly the flashiest Nike ever released, or the best performing on the court, or the most storiedbut its tasteful, understated, and wholly timeless, three adjectives that dont get thrown around in sneaker circles often enough. Long before Balenciaga made clownishly oversized sneakers a thing, Air Force 1s were chunkier and more bulbous than any of the sneakers that came before them. When doused in all-white, those proportionsalong with the perforations on the toe and the panelling along the sidesfeel all the more statuesque. And while they look incredible fresh out the box, theyre among a rare class of white leather kicks that genuinely still look killer smoked to high hell. Whether youre on your first pair or your 40th, its never really a bad time to pick up another.

    The History Of The Common Projects Achilles Low

    Magazine art director Peter Poopat and footwear brand consultant Flavio Girolami became friends after repeatedly bumping into one another around the fashion scene in New York City. The two began meeting up after work from time to time and often discussed their frustration at not being able to find the right clothes or footwear to suit their select tastes.

    While living in different countries, Poopat and Girolami began working on a number of ventures together or common projects one of which involved creating the perfect sneaker.

    The mission was simple: to design a pared-back white leather shoe that combined the casual appeal of a sneaker with the high-end build quality and premium materials more commonly found in luxury Italian casual dress shoes. This footwear hybrid became the Achilles Low Common Projects first and, at the time, only model.

    The Achilles is famed for its minimal design and lack of branding

    It launched in 2004 and retailed for $265 a number that while seemingly steep, was actually a loss when materials and other costs were taken into account.

    Irrespective of the price, which later had to be ramped up further still, the Achilles Low quickly became the iPhone of the sneaker world. These minimalist marvels soon lined both the front row at fashion weeks around the world and the shelves of all the most respected retailers, thus cementing their place as one of menswears most coveted items.

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    Original Achilles Leather Low

    Sleek leather sneakers are constructed in a supple finish. Leather upper Round toe Lace-up vamp Leather lining Rubber sole Made in Italy SIZE Platform, 1 Please note: This style runs large. Order one size down. Mens Shoes Contemporary Lifestyle > Saks Fifth Avenue > Barneys. Common Projects. Color: Grey. Size: 6.

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    Sneaker Hall Of Fame: Common Projects Achilles Low

    The BEST Minimal Leather Sneakers | 6 Common Projects Alternatives

    The Sneaker Hall Of Fame is FashionBeans compendium of the most iconic trainer designs of all time. From the Common Projects Achilles to the Nike Air Force One, these are the kicks that have changed the course of footwear history.

    The plain white sneaker is more than just a shoe rack staple, its a bona fide style essential. No man or woman, for that matter should be without a pair. And when it comes to choosing, theres certainly no shortage of options.

    Adidas and Converse are two of the big names that immediately spring to mind, but even among such stiff competition, theres one brand, and one shoe in particular, that stands out: the Common Projects Achilles Low.

    Having only been on the scene since 2004, the Achilles may not have the century-spanning heritage of Converse high-tops, nor the sporting pedigree of the Stan Smith, but with its buttery Italian-leather construction and streamlined silhouette, it has successfully set the benchmark for all other minimal sneakers to aspire to.

    Here we delve into the details behind every stylish mans stripped-back sneaker of choice and look at what makes the Achilles Low a modern classic.

    Each pair is crafted from luxurious Italian leather

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    Original Achilles Leather Sneakers

    Light-grey Leather, Gold Stamped Serial Numbers, Leather Linings, Rubber Soles, Lace-up, Come With Dust Bag, Made In Italy The Original Achilles is Common Projects most popular style and its easy to see why. Combining the best in pared-back design with top-notch Italian construction, these light-grey leather sneakers represent a contemporary approach to luxury. Shown here with an Acne Studios jacket, Neil Barrett T-shirt and Casely-Hayford trousers.

    Ney Workers Club Dellow Leather Sneaker

    A lot of upstart brands try their hands at making retro vulcanized sneakers, but few have as rich a backstory or as distinct a point of view as Stepney Workers Club. Founded in London in 2018, S.W.C. borrows its name from a 1920s anti-fascist sports group, and its signature modelthe Dellowis based directly on an old canvas sneaker the brands designers once came across. They updated the simple design and beautiful construction, added their own winsome handshake logo, and then decked the shoe out in a wide range of colors and materials. These days you can find the Dellow in smooth suedes and hardy canvases, but for our money the best version is this white leather version. Its less than $90 for a sneaker with decades of history and smart design under its belt. Thats how you craft an instant classic, kids.

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    Common Projects Achilles Low Top Sneakers

    $473Common Projects

    Highlights

    • serial number print at the heel
    • front lace-up fastening

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    Axel Arigato Clean 90

    Lyst

    The Axel Arigato Clean 90 sneaker is an originator while also remaining true to its minimalist sneaker roots.

    Minus the branding, the upper looks almost identical to the Common Projects, however, its the sole that sets it apart from the others.

    Instead of the default flat surface of the Margom sole, the Clean 90 has a jagged appearance. A design choice that instantly brings images of the Nike Cortez to mind. This not only makes the shoe stand out but gives it a sportier appearance. Something athleisure heads will dig for sure.

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    Top 4 Common Projects Alternatives

    The Koio Capri is our top choice if youre looking for an alternative to Common Projects.

    Made with the highest quality Italian leather and manufactured in the Marche region, both the Capri and Achilles are outfitted with Margom soles.

    The toe box and eyelets are nearly identical when comparing the two together. Koio does offer a version of the low top with a suede accent on the heel, which we really like.

    With nine different colorways, you dont have to feel restricted to the all-white look. For instance, the Fiore colorway, while a little bolder, stays simple and will help you stand out in a crowd.

    The Capri is lined with the same full-grain calf-skin leather found on the upper. The padding around the ankle and suede in the heel truly conveys a sense of luxury.

    Were big fans of the Koio and think theyre worth every penny. When you compare the quality of Common Projects and Koios, youre getting nearly the same thing. The extra 40% markup is for the CP brand name.

    If the price is the number one reason youre staying away from Common Projects Achilles, but you want the same quality and experience, youll be happy with the Koio Capri.

    Common Projects Achilles Sole

    • Thick, good quality Italian rubber
    • Stitched and cemented to upper with Stroebel stitching
    • More durable than standard sneaker construction

    The upper is attached to a one-piece rubber Margom sole, which can take a beating without crumbling and wearing away like most sneaker soles its really thick and great quality Italian rubber, with Gear Patrolcalling Margom,

    a revered Italian brand creates many of the outsoles for top luxury footwear brands because they genuinely are the best of the best.

    Its attached with whats called sidewalk stitching or Stroebel construction, a mixture of cementing and stitching which is super rare. Most sneakers have the sole glued, on this is glued andstitched, with the stitching being the main method of attachment. That means maybe, possibly you could get these resoled when the time comes. Maybe.

    More importantly, as I mentioned earlier, it means that with age you wont get holes around the toe break like every other sneaker you own.

    • Thick, soft leather footbed
    • Surprisingly heavy sole

    There are four reasons the fit & sizing is a bit of a pain in the ass with Common Projects:

  • No half sizes.
  • No other widths.
  • They only use European sizes.
  • Theres a lot of misinformation online about how accurate the sizing is.
  • After a very long deliberation I wound up going with the 45s: today theyre a hair small, but they stretched a teeny tiny bit and theyre still comfy as all hell.

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    Review: Is Common Projects The Goat White Sneaker

    The GOAT.

    The apex.

    The pinnacle of white sneakerdom.

    The greatest white sneaker of all time, thats what people say about the legendary and phenomenally expensive Achilles low sneaker from Common Projects and if youre reading this, your question is probably this: are they worth the eye watering price of $400+?

    Well, friend, youve come to the right place. I did not get these shoes for free, this is not a paid post, I picked these up at the Nordstroms in Columbus Circle here in New York City and I felt the gut punch to my wallet just like you would.

    Ive been wearing these sneakers on and off for several months so you and I can properly explore the super clean, timeless, sleek, youthful-yet-very-grown-up Achilles low sneaker from the very mysterious footwear company called Common Projects.

    • Started by a New York art director and Italian creative consultant
    • No money spent on marketing
    • Cult-like following

    Common Projects started in 2004 as a collaboration between Prathan Peter Poopat, an art director in New York City, and Flavio Girolami, an Italian creative consultant.

    If you can believe it, even though its the most talked about white sneaker on Earth and its the cornerstone of every outfit on the malefashionadvice subreddit, the company has never spent a dollar on advertising.

    On top of that, their website is complete dogsh*t , is hideous and seldom updated, they really do absolutely nothing to market except let the product itself fuel word of mouth.

    Common Projects Pros & Cons

    Koio vs. Common Projects: Which Is Better? | Best White Leather Sneakers Menswear Review
    • Can be worn with any outfit
    • Stitched sole
    • Toe box quite shallow and narrow
    • Sizing is tricky
    • Can be stuffy in hot weather
    • Phenomenally expensive

    Good God, these shoes are cool.

    Theyre just the coolest shoes. The whole breezy but dressy, casual but formal, minimalist but unmistakably branded look, from top to bottom there just isnt anything quite like them. They go with every single outfit, it doesnt matter how casual or formal it is.

    I love the fact that the upper is stitched to the sole so you wont get the dreaded toebreak holes.

    Theyre very comfortable, I love the softness of the footbed coupled with the weight and durability of the sole.

    Now, theyre not sneakers exactly. That word has connotations of beat around shoes you dont have to care for, you know? Common Projects need shoe trees, for goodness sake they need more babying than the average sneaker out there, which is a turn off to some folks.

    Its also too slim and sleek for some people, not only in its width, but the toebox is quite shallow and narrow, squeezing the toes of the bigger-footed among us. They should do half sizes and wider widths, and they dont.

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    The Mens Common Projects Sneakers Buying Guide

    Common Projects sneakers specialize in creating mens footwear that have a sleek and minimalist style. The labels range of kicks includes high-tops, slip-ons and low-top sneakers available in leather and suede. Using a varied color palette from brick red to jet black, sneakers like the Common Projects Achilles have gained a cult status over the years. Expect to see every pair stamped with the signature gold numbering at the heel.

    Common Projects sneakers are defined by their clean-lined look, premium craftsmanship and high-quality materials. The New York-based labels cult-favorite Achilles tennis sneakers are said to have kickstarted the luxury sneaker market and Common Projects continues to stay true to its minimalist roots today with a wide range of pared-back styles. Read on for our Common Projects mens sneakers buying guide, which will help you decide on the style and size that works for you best.

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    How To Clean And Care For Common Projects Achilles

    • Clean regularly with damp rag
    • Occasionally brush with horsehair brush and use leather cleaner
    • Use white leather crema for scuffs, like Saphir or Kellys
    • Magic eraser on the sole
    • Use shoe trees

    Cleanliness is next to godliness, and it says a lot about a man if his sneakers are white and spotless. Boys like their sneakers beat up and dirty, but do not be that guy who spends $400 on shoes and lets them get ugly. Keep them as clean as you can itll extend their lifespan and make you look like a guy who gives a damn.

    The good news is that this is smooth leather, so there arent many places for dirt to get trapped and its easy to wipe them down with just a damp rag now and then.

    Sometimes theyll be a bit too dirty for that, so when it comes to cleaning them:

  • First of all you want to give it a brush down with a horsehair brush, which has fine hairs that get deeper into the pores than other brushes.
  • Use a leather cleaner. A lot of people useJason Markks Premium Shoe Cleaner Jason Markk is strongly associated with the brand for some reason but I use Cobblers Choice Leather Spot Cleaner and it works great.
  • Apply and then wipe it down with a rag for tougher clumps of dirt, you might want to use a toothbrush or a stiff haired brush.
  • The sole is a lot harder to clean. If your shoe cleaner doesnt work, use something like Mr. Cleans Magic Eraser.
  • Treat them well and theyll last you at least five years, maybe more.

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