The Sneakers: the shoes of the future
To sneak, it is from this exact verb that the term sneakers is derived. You may be wondering why? Simple, sneakers with their rubber soles are so quiet that they can sneak away without being heard.
It was precisely this technical characteristic of theirs that baptized them as such already in the second half of the nineteenth century. Fashion has then customs cleared the word sneakers in all languages, to define an essential of street style.
The Comfy Chic for the Victorians:
The first sports shoes were invented by The Liverpool Rubber Company, founded by J. Dunlop in the 1830s. From the union of the rubber sole and canvas, the first sneakers, known as sand-shoes, were born.
The first to wear them and appreciate the comfort were the Victorians. They were perfect for the first trips, for excursions to the beach and to practice the early sports such as tennis. Tennis shoes were therefore associated with those who had the luxury of leisure and the funds to travel.
All Stars for the Mass:
In the early 1900s, sneakers experienced a boom in their popularity and consequently in production. Thousands of kids around the world wanted to buy the shoes worn and endorsed by sports stars. In 1917, the Converse All-Star was born, which, worn by the first basketball players, had the ability to make those who wore them feel like stars. Sneakers since this time use the faces of sportsmen to promote themselves.
The spread of sports shoes is definitely linked to the massification of the population and the importance that sports have in this context. The 1936 Olympics in Berlin acted as a catalyzer to popularize sneakers worldwide.
Historical advertisement from Colchester Rubber Co,
Aerobic Dance adv, 80's style
The Must wear for everyone:
Starting from the 80s, sneakers became essential to complete any casual or sporty look. Thanks to the diffusion of fitness, sneakers become fundamental and they spread among the most passionate about sports. In fact, when we think about 80s, the first image that comes in our mind is people wearing white sneakers, a bodysuit and leg warmers during an aerobic lesson.
To foment the growing popularity of this model, artists and famous faces of the sport began to support the sneakers, signing collaborations that still today are in vogue, such as that of Michael Jordan with Nike for the Nike Air Jordan. Still today they are one of the most famous and sought after models, even in modern variants.
In the 90s the competition between the giants of sneakers was ruthless. More and more models are created to satisfy the tastes of each person. We see them worn by all the characters of Friends for a relaxed but chic style, by rappers to complete the hip-hop look and by Nirvana, emblem of grunge.
The Spirit of Millenials:
As we enter the new millennium, sneakers are being welcomed with open arms by new and past generations equally. Increasingly, we see adults wearing them with both casual looks and summer outfits. GenZ and Millennials are seeing sneakers as a key element to any look, bringing out the need for comfort but at the same time style. Sneakers starting from the new millennium are freed from the link with sports and become the most used footwear to date.
Sneakers are cleared through customs even by the big luxury brands that more and more often introduce their logos on them or sign thick collaborations with the giants of sneakers. Sneakers paradoxically become unique accessories that push thousands of young people or resellers to queue for hours at the stores or on online sites to have a unique item on the market. The value of sneakers has increased exponentially since 2010, even achieving record sales where kicks have been sold for tens of thousands but also millions of dollars. This growth seems unstoppable and according to market forecasts, the sneakers industry is expected to reach $95.14 billion by 2015.
Sneakers are the shoes of the future:
Sneakers in their simplicity and comfort have managed to conquer an entire century of humanity, making us understand that sneakers from sports to fashion, dominate the consumer market.
Nike Jordan 1, The symbol of a Generation
How to Manufacture
Sneakers are an icon of pop culture, capable of conquering high fashion and the masses. Access the sneakers that have made history including Converse Chuck Taylor 70, Balenciaga Triple S, and many others.
Discover the Shoe manufacturing process for Iconic Sneakers that involves the assembly of several components and requires the use of precision and skills.
Access the Technical Guide on Iconic Sneakers