Paying hundreds of dollars for shoes may seem a foreign concept, but for some Decatur students it’s a lifestyle and with the recent Kanye West Adidas ‘Yeezy’ collaborations and Jordan’s that sell out in seconds, coveted releases are more prominent than ever.
Recently the high-profile New York skate company Supreme released a limited collaborative shoe with Jordan brand. Selling out in seconds most were unable to obtain a pair.
Noah Ruffin, an 11th grader at Decatur high found himself out of luck on the highly desired pair of shoes.
“The website crashed at 11,” Noah said. “I was trying to get the least sought after pair and it still didn’t work.”
Keenan McGinnis, a 12th grader at Decatur High School, had more luck logging on in school to secure the quick to sell out sneaker.
“I went on the website in school actually, when I first was on there it was all sold out but I refreshed again and they were there and I got them in my cart,” McGinnis said. “I almost started crying.”
In a world where sneakers sell out in mere seconds many may wonder what the point is. Sneakers are a source of pride, history, but more recently they’ve become a way to gloat about monetary status.
The people buying shoes weren’t buying shoes to wear but instead to sell again for 2-3x the amount that they were originally listed for. Pushing out buyers like Ruffin that wanted to own the shoe to wear.
Those unfamiliar with the fashion world may compare it to ticket scalpers who buy all the tickets just to lock down the market and sell for more than the listed price. It’s simple economics.
Brandon Byars, a DHS 12th grade student, has been on both sides of the reselling debacle that has fashion minded people shaking their heads.
“On a few occasions I do resell shoes just so I can get money for something I want,” Byars said.
However, when the new Kanye West x Adidas collaboration was unveiled in February Byars knew he would hold onto the shoes he got.
“I decided to keep the [Yeezy’s] because a couple years ago when the yeezy 2s came out I didn’t know how to get them] so I told myself the next yeezy release I would keep them,” Byars said.
Money may drive the purchase of shoes, but sneakers and limited clothing that have dropped in the past few months go far beyond the price tag and resale culture.
“I think that shoes are a form of art, different ideas and concepts that companies like Adidas do to them,” Byars said.
As the new Kanye west collab and other highly coveted brands continue to find their ways into the hands of high schoolers it may appear to only be about money, but for DHS students it’s much more than that.
“It’s definitely a cultural step into a new world,” Ruffin said.
For those who don’t understand, “It’s something you have to experience first hand,” McGinnis said.
Photo courtesy of Kennan McGinnis