The Yeezy Boost dominated adidas-related headlines in 2015, but a lack of releases in the new calendar year has allowed another Originals silhouette to sneak up and capture the attention—and wallets—of sneakerheads.
Thus far for adidas in 2016, the year has been all about the NMD franchise. Although the sneaker took some time to pick up steam following its December debut, the floodgates have now opened, and the hype train is showing no signs of slowing down. Release after release and restock after restock, NMD sneakers continue to sell out almost immediately, and that goes for both rare versions like collabs and Primeknit variations as well as more widely available general releases.
To make some sense of the madness, Highsnobiety spoke with employees from sneaker shops around the world to get their takes on what has been the biggest sneaker of the year. When it comes down to the NMD's popularity, a common thread seems to be its combination of cutting-edge looks and tech with a lightweight, easy-to-wear build. "It's both completely fresh and modern-looking, while at the same time capturing the aesthetic of modern-day fashion," size?'s James Trivunovic said.
Naturally, the NMD has drawn comparisons to the equally-popular Ultra Boost, but a worker at Brandshop says you shouldn't read too much into the similarities there. "I think the NMD is so popular for more than just the Boost tech. The model itself ticks a lot of boxes, and adidas designers have shown their comprehension of the people's needs," he said.
As much success as the sneaker is having right now, there will inevitably come a time when the hype dies down—just don't count on it happening anytime soon. "I think adidas is doing a great job of protecting the model. NMDs are not easy to get your hands on by any means. I don’t see any signs of these slowing up," Concepts' Deon Point said.