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If ever an accessory screamed un-hip, it was the boat shoe. Too functional to be campy, like a monocle, too staid for rappers and too provincially American to get swept up in fashion’s perpetual obsession with anoraks and sailor stripes, the humble boat shoe just couldn’t catch a break. They scream clam bakes, Kennebunkport and Yankee Republicanism; the icon of the boat shoe is, yikes, former President George Herbert Walker Bush. But the tide for the boat shoe has turned, as fashion tides inevitably must: Marc by Marc Jacobs recently gave the classic a satin update (dubious), L.A.’s Keep Company cross-bred it with Vans and manufactured the hybrid cruelty-free in Brazil, and now France’s taste-making boutique A.P.C. is doing a traditional men’s version for summer. Take the bait, but take it straight: Sperry’s is the old-money original, and dockside or not, it’s pair you want to be wearing all spring long.

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