Hi, my name’s Gary and I’m addicted to buying sneakers. I can’t help it, all it takes is a quick look online and there’s a new [insert brand name] limited/special edition that I haven’t got in that particular colour/fabric and I want it so bad it becomes a need. At last count I have over 75 fresh kicks (yes I used that word even though I’m the wrong side of 40) in my wardrobe. I have so many sneakers, I forget what I have. Some I’m saving to wear for a special occasion that may never happen. I could just stop buying shoes but I don’t want to. There are worse conditions than hyper consumerism and looking like a don from the ankle down.
I blame Converse. Back in 2011 we collaborated when I was Brand Manager at Mackintosh and since then the First String team and I have remained good friends. Over the years they’ve been kind enough to send me some straight fire (yes I used that word too) including the handmade SAK One Star, the asymmetric Number (N)ine Odessa, the 1st Missoni Auckland Racer, the 2nd Margiela Chuck Taylor and so on. All this did was get me hooked like a junkie where that magical feeling of owning something new wears off after so many weeks and needs to be replaced by something new again to keep the elation going.
Some highs wear off after a while, like a brand of drug that stops working so you need to try an alternative. I went through the Common Projects phase until my 5th pair (the Olive edition exclusive to UNIS) made me feel sick after I spent more money on them than my first car cost me. I love a flattering, narrow last and a butter soft leather upper, but as my Energy Marketing friend Simon says, “they should leave making sneakers to the experts”. I didn’t get on board the Yeezy hype train because (a) I don’t like the shoe and (b) the whole thing is a bit silly. I never got the Stan Smith renaissance either, purely because I don’t like such a rounded toe cap. Rod Laver’s however are the bomb (urgh, I did it again).
Here are my Top 3 purchases this month from my main supplier and arguably the finest dealers in sneaker porn, Footpatrol.
1 Converse x Fragment Design Chuck Taylor ’70
It’s Hiroshi Fujiwara with the signature twin lightning bolts on the heel tab, what more do you need to know? You cannot beat white Chucks for the most versatile sneaker known to man (& woman); even when they get f***ed up they still manage to look dope (last one I promise). This Tuxedo edition plays on the monochrome luxury story and are a welcome addition to my expansive collection of Converse.
2 Asics Gel-Kayano Tanabata Pack
The most comfortable sneaker ever. I run in the Kayano 22 so am already a fan when it comes to their stability/support and I like how Asics are stepping up their design game. I picked up the Oceans Pack in Spectra Green back in January this year which isn’t the easiest colour to coordinate your look with, but these Antique Moss editions will style up with pretty much anything.
3 Nikelab Blazer Low CS TC
I’m not really into the Blazer, but I’m really into this light grey tumbled leather drop (definitely the last sneaker superlative in this article) for it’s clean lines. My favourite colourway more than white for it’s tonal elegance. Looking forward to wearing these once I Jason Markk them to death.
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