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In 2020, more than ever before, the sneakers is a multi-billion euro growth market. But this was not always the case. The interest in this medium, which today has a global reach, was initially a niche market that mainly concerned streetwear culture enthusiasts.
To understand the beginnings of the movement, we need to go back in time. A trend born in the United States in the 90's, the sneakers were able to export themselves through sportsmen such as Michael Jordan but also rappers such as the Wu Tang Clan, Nelly, symbol of the Nike street classic with the Air Force 1. Gathered around a real sharing, the sneakers addicts met during "camp out" in front of the sneakers shops in their city. With each limited release, the most determined fans could spend up to a week to get their dream pair. At the time, it was a fairly closed world, not easily accessible to those new to sneakers.
Then the arrival of digital technology completely reshuffled the deck, opening up the market to a wider audience. The sneakers industry was then structured with selected retailers who were given accounts allowing them to sell brands such as Nike or Adidas for example. Specialised media such as Camino TV or Hypebeast also appeared, covering streetwear, fashion and sneakers. Thus, consumers outside this private sphere were able to quickly acquire and assimilate the codes of this market.
The demand started to explode making sneakers the holy grail to obtain. The market was then balanced between enthusiasts who wanted to buy their pair at any price to collect them and consumers attracted by the financial gains they could make. From a simple passion to a global business, the sneakers are now accessible products whose value can quickly soar for certain pairs.
Over the past decade, the demand for sneakers has continued to rise, resulting in some very high resale prices. This is the case with several iconic collaborations between sportswear brands and designers. For example, in 2017 we saw an iconic collaboration between the label Off-White from Virgil Abloh and Nike come to fruition. Extremely limited, this collaboration was based around 10 of the swoosh brand's flagship models as well as more modern ones. The designer from Chigaco has revisited some of the brand's Nike Air Max 97, Air Force 1 Air Jordan 1 and many Nike classics with a contemporary approach by destructuring the inserts of the pairs.
These sneakers have completely overwhelmed the fans to the point of reaching staggering resale prices, such as the Air Jordan 1 Off-White Chicago 8,000 on the most popular sizes. Similarly, Adidas has offered one of the most expensive sneakers in the world thanks to its partnership with the French house of Chanel through its ambassador Pharrel Williams. The NMD Human Race TR Chanel x Colette was sold at a shop price of 1000 euros. Released exclusively at the Colette concept store in Paris, the pair is now priced at nearly 20,000 euros.
We can also talk about the collaborations between Nike and the famous rapper from Houston Travis Scott. A true showman, La Flame has offered us iconic collaborations on iconic models like the Jordan 1 High or the Nike Air Force 1. Ultra limited, these sneakers are now sold at gold prices like the Air Jordan 1 Retro High Travis Scott "Cactus Jack" which reaches 2000 euros on certain sizes.
Finally, it's important to talk about the most expensive pair in the world. Created for the movie Back to the Future, the Nike Air Mag has conquered the fans of sneakers. The world's first self-fastening shoe with a futuristic and avant-garde style, this pair is almost unobtainable and now sells for over 200,000 euros.
Fortunately, this is only part of the sneakers offer, reserved for luxury or ultra-rare product enthusiasts. To suit all budgets, brands continue to diversify their range and offer more accessible models to give all consumers the chance to buy a sneakers without breaking the bank!
It is truly Nike that has succeeded in diversifying its offer by proposing sneakers lifestyle of very high quality at reasonable prices. Thus, the swoosh has revisited its classic silhouette symbolizing the street through timeless and design ranges. In 2019 the first Nike Air Force 1 Shadow have been launched.
On a base of Air Force 1the Beaverton-based brand offers a sneakers with split elements, in line with the trend set by the Nike and Sacai collaboration. Available in a variety of colours, such as the Pastel, Spruce or the Pistachio Frost and its pastel shades, this sneakers has won the hearts of trainer fans thanks to its original design.
The must-have of this year is also from the sports equipment manufacturer Nike with once again a Air Force 1 named Drop Type. This silhouette is part of the N.354 collection celebrating the heritage of the swoosh brand. This model takes the unstructured and avant-garde codes of the collaboration Nike x Off-White. Made of leather, this sneakers is adorned with a Velcro strap and Flywire technology to add a technical touch to the model. Produced in trendy colours such as Black / Volt and White OG , the Nike Air Force Drop 1 Type has become the affordable pair to have in your collection.
Finally, Adidas has found the perfect compromise between performance and lifestyle with its Ozweego and its futuristic lines. Brands are not hesitating to offer quality models produced in larger quantities to ensure that all people wear the sneakers that they like on their feet.
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