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Five Iconic Moments In Modern Sneaker History

November 2018Words by Mr Ashley Clarke

This weekend, a rare (and beautiful) Mandarin duck – dubbed by the internet as “Hot Duck” – was spotted in Central Park. One fashion commentator was quick to tweet: “who will design a sneaker that looks like the Hot Duck?” Everything seems to be about sneakers in 2018. 

Ms Vanessa Friedman of The New York Times called sneakers the Dutch Tulips of today, and there is nary a fashion designer alive who hasn’t turned their hand to sporty, rubber-soled footwear in the past few years. But how did we get here? How did their popularity accelerate into the mainstream so suddenly?

To find out, we’ve delved into The Ultimate Sneaker Book!, an anvil of a tome charting 100 years of sneaker history. It is a painstakingly detailed document of landmark collaborations, ad campaigns and brand wars, dealing with what it calls the “otaku-level minutiae” of sneaker culture. As you may expect, there’s a lot to work through, but we’ve picked out the most important moments in sneaker culture in the past 10 years…