navy adidas trainers A look at pop culture is off and running with
He says no pair ever gets too worn because he wears them on a rotation, and he’s constantly adding new ones. His next paycheck is already spent on a pair of Vans.
For Law, 33, the sneakers that define his generation are Puma Suedes and Adidas Superstars. (Coincidentally, Puma and Adidas were brands founded by brothers, Adolph and .) For an older generation, the classic shoe is probably the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star, and for Gen Yers, the “must have” sneakers of their youth were Nike Air Jordans.
Basketball shoes have been popular in the United States for decades hence the Chuck Taylor and the Adidas Jabbar, which when it came out in 1971 was the first to be endorsed by a basketball star (), but Britons typically favored serious running trainers. That all changed with the emergence of hip hop in the 1990s, Law says.
Now 13 year old boys pay attention to their footwear the way 30 year old women pay attention to their handbags. “It’s the age of hip hop and that’s changed the world of sneakers. It became part of your identity. How you wear them, how you lace them say something about you,” Law says. “In England, if you see someone in a certain pair of trainers, you might know where they come from. Certain shoes you can look at and say, ‘He’s from the north of England and he’s into football.’ ”
But , vice president of global marketing for Converse, makes the case that sneakers are among the most democratic icons, especially when it comes to wannabe sports stars.
“Sneakers have loyalty because you can’t buy the same car that’s driven in
Converse tinkers with the “Chuck” this year launching the Premiere All Star with a more tailored shape but makes it a point to never stray too far from the original because it’s the pureness and simplicity that’s made it a success for more than 80 years.
“A 50 year old stockbroker could be walking down the street and eye a 16 year old punk rocker, and they’ll both be wearing the same product. They accept each other as part of the same little group. It defies logic in many respects,” Maddocks says. A few fad shoes, such as the Pony Linebacker, also made their way onto the pages.
The Linebacker is a shoe that’s all but forgotten, he says, but in 1983, it was all the rage because American football just debuted on British television and everyone was buying the Linebacker in the color combination of their favorite football team.
Pony also released a spinoff shoe called the Cricket, which featured leather trim instead of suede. But, Law adds, “It was a one hit wonder.”
Tennis, aerobics especially in the 1980s and extreme sports, such as skateboarding, also have influenced sneaker design. Other sneakers that garnered mention in the book include Nike’s Cortex, the sneaker that popularized Nike’s trademark Swoosh in 1972 when it was made in white leather; Reebok’s Freestyle from 1985, which came in high and low top versions, that was supposed to cater to the fitness world but became a commuter’s best friend; Tretorn’s Nylite, the first “luxury” sports shoe that was launched in 1965 but became a “must have” of the ’80s; and 1982’s New Balance 030, dubbed “the ultimate kids’ sneaker.”
It’s too new to be in the book, but Law has high hopes for the Adidas 1, which comes with a built in microprocessor that’s supposed to adapt the shoe’s level of cushioning depending on the wearer’s environment. “It’s got an onboard computer and it’s not bad looking.”