State of Sneakers: 40 Die Hard Sneaker Fans Discuss The Good And Bad of Sneakers

Name: Bernadette
Age: 27
Location: San Jose, CA
Twitter / Instagram: @NAILS_alwaysDID
What Is Your Favorite Sneaker?:

My favoritest favorite is the Air Jordan 5 (V) Retro "Black/Metallic Silver." I like shoes that hug my feet. Plus, I got my first pair for my 21st birthday.

How Often Do You Buy New Sneakers?:

I buy sneakers as often as I like the ones that are coming out. I'm not really the one to get the latest drop because they're the latest. I really have to love them.

What's The Most You've Spent On A Pair Of Sneakers?:

$189. It was on a pair of Nike Air Max 95's "Black/Grey/Cherry Pink." I saved up all summer to have them for the first day of 7th grade, even if they went against school uniform regulations.

How Many Pairs Of Sneakers Do You Have?:

I'm in the triple digits, I want to say about 150 pairs. My sneakers mos def fight for space with my heels in my closet. A lot of my collection come from my teen years, when I had nothing better to do but go to Foot Locker every other day and cop a shoe that I fancied. That or I wanted to be like my brother who was a sneaker collector himself and get whatever he bought.

Do You Collect A Specific Type Of Sneaker?:

Yes... strictly Jordans, and Nikes (Air Maxes, Dunks, Blazers, etc.). Although my selection of Vans is pretty tough too, thanks to my first high-school job at the skatepark.


Have You Ever Sold A Pair Of Sneakers?:

No. I don't have the heart to. Every pair I own has a meaning or memory behind it. I had a pair stolen four years ago though. I'm still not over it. I hope that person gets athlete's foot.

How Often Do You Look At Sneakers On The Internet?:

Every day. I get e-mails from Sneaker Freaker and I also subscribe to e-mails from local boutiques that inform me about future releases. That and I'm always keeping up with social media—my Instagram and Twitter feed is always full of sneaker news.

What Is The First Thing That Comes To Mind When You Hear The Term Sneakerhead?:

These new kids in the scene who are buying up all the stock and flipping them for double. Do I sound bitter?

What Are Your Feelings On The State Of Sneakers Right Now?:

I won't lie, my love for sneakers has never changed and never will, but my drive to buy them has. I don't feel like they are as exclusive as they were back in the '90s which takes away the giddiness of stepping out in public with them on for the first time. I'm the type that doesn't mind having what other people have, but when everyone and their mommas have them on it just doesn't feel special anymore.

What has changed about sneakers in the last 5/10/20 years to you?:

It's more of a fashion trend thing now; it's been watered down with so many extra colorways for everything and extra re-releases as well. Sneaker collectors and buyers nowadays buy them now because they just look good (which I'm not knocking them for, because its true) or to flip them for profit. Back when I started to become fascinated with shoes and I was begging my Dad for a bigger allowance, buying shoes was for the sole purpose of wanting to be like your favorite player. I wanted to be like Mike. I wanted to play my 7th grade basketball playoffs in whatever he had on in hopes I would be able to jump like him. I wanted the Space Jams because how many people do you know can say they played ball with Bugs Bunny, against some aliens? Sneakers to me are more of a history and feeling. Plus when it became a sub genre of the hip-hop culture, it was a done deal for me—I felt extra cool in my 3's listening to N.W.A.

 

I would like to see better material for the new mark-ups on prices.

 

What Would You Like To See Change In The Future?:

I would like to see better material for the new mark-ups on prices. I told myself I'll always buy sneakers no matter how high retail gets, even when I'm 40 I'll buy them. If not for me, for my future kids... as long as the quality stays good enough. I would also like to see fewer re-releases, just to put the fundamentals of getting them and collecting them for your personal collection back into the sneaker world. Don't you want to have that story about how you found them? I also want to see more collectors with actual love for their kicks: Wear them, play ball in them, know more about its history... not just see it for its colors or its status. For the near near future, I would like to some J's in the North Carolina colorway get retroed, though. And bring back those orange Nike tags too!!

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