Skateboarders Are the Original Sneakerheads
According to Bobbito Garcia, New York City sneaker culture was formed on the blacktops of basketball courts. While this may be true, East Coast skate culture lays a big claim to the origin of the "sneakerhead." A skater is lucky to get two to three months out of a pair of sneakers. With this short lifespan, a skater is forced to constantly be on the lookout for a fresh pair at all times.
Still, you want a pair of sneakers that are functional to skate in and look cool. While skateboarding sneakers have been around for decades now, East Coast skaters started to rock Nike and Adidas long before the brands caught on and made skate-specific sneakers.
Gino Ianucci was well-known for rocking some of the freshest pairs, and Stevie Williams' first pro-model with DC Shoes gave skaters a Jordan-esque answer to boring skate shoes. Rob Welsh was well-known for his obsession with white-on-white skate kicks.
The popularity of the skater-inspired sneaker obsession helped fuel the success of brands such as Nike SB, which probably influenced you into the "limited edition" sneaker hype, which got you into raw denim, which got you into streetwear, which got you... Here.