5 Overdone Sneaker Cliches That Need to Stop
Directors, artists and musicians are all subject to criticism when they overcook their creations with clichés and, frankly, those in the sneakersphere shouldn’t be getting any special treatment.
If you’re an avid sneaker aficionado, you’ll be familiar with many of these footwear fads, but we’ll forgive you for turning a blind eye to ‘em – it’s easy to get lost in amongst those crowded release calendars.
The truth is, footwear is becoming more formulaic, and we can’t wait from some of these banalities to go bust.
Chunkier is Not Better
Complaining about the chunky sneaker trend has become an all-too-common gripe, particularly among the game’s veterans. That said, we’re not calling for a blanket ban on the bulk, we’re just asking for chunk in the right places.
Plenty of silhouettes have won us over with their sizeable soles, the M2K and Yeezy BOOST 700 just to name two. However, we’ve seen some brands pack in as much elevation as possible, with the results falling undeniably flat.
Just because you can supersize, doesn’t mean you should.
Slow Down with the Sock-like Sneakers
The emergence of technical knitted textiles like Primeknit and Flyknit has led to a smorgasbord of sock-like sneakers hitting shelves. Admittedly, when combined with some kind of cage for a little added support, these sneakers are hella comfortable.
However, it’s the emergence of high-cut scuba-style sneakers that has us scratching our heads. We’ve got to give props to Balenciaga’s Speed Trainer for bringing the concept to the fore, but did we really need every fashion house and streetwear label to dip their toes in the water? Probably not.
Often marketed as ‘utilitarian’, these high-cut socks with buckles and straps are ‘function over form’.
Cool it with the Colourways, Please
It’s not a cliché per se, but the mindless rehashing of the game’s beloved silhouettes is now doing more harm than good.
We don’t need to rewind far back to examine the consequences of market oversaturation, a time where many OG heads were selling their most coveted Jays to fund the latest UltraBOOSTs and NMDs. The sneakersphere was smitten with all-conquering energy-returning innovation, and the brand responded accordingly by swamping us with every colourway and retweak imaginable.
Pretty sure there’s still some poor souls out there trying to move leftover pairs of NMD XR1s they copped to resell.
Too Many Throwback Hits Gets Old Real Quick
We all love a good throwback hit, and the sneaker brands just love playing on our appetite for a bit of nostalgia. We’ve seen countless 90s classics resurrected in recent times, dug out from the archives for ‘modern’ reissues that are, well, not modern at all in most cases.
Sure, the sneakersphere probably needed to revisit this golden era of kicks, but did we really need to revive, what seems like, all of them?
Some things are best left in the past – whether they have a chunky sole or not.
These days, it seems like collaborative drops garner more excitement than any other type of sneaker release. You’d think that’d encourage designers to push boundaries and come through with something fresh, right? Well, not always.
Adding ‘premium materials’ to sneakers doesn’t make it collaboration-worthy, nor does slapping on an extra bit of branding.
Are y’all even trying?