Fashion

Kick Picks: A Hypebeast's Guide to Sneaker Collecting

What sets a grail-worthy sneaker apart from the rest? Here's a rundown of the key factors sneakerheads consider when searching for their next pickup.

June 19, 2024

In the land of hypebeast culture, where fashion fuses with passion – sneaker collecting reigns supreme. It's more than just accumulating shoes; it's a lifestyle, an obsession, and an art form. For those who live and breathe sneaker culture, the hunt for the rarest, most coveted kicks is the ultimate quest. But what makes a sneaker truly grail-worthy? What separates a mere shoe from a legendary icon? And how can you ensure the authenticity of your prized pickups?

Made to Attract: Limited-Run Sneakers

In the sneaker world, rarity is king. Limited-run releases, often dubbed "drops," are the holy grail for sneakerheads. These shoes are produced in extremely limited quantities, creating a frenzy of demand that far outstrips supply. The scarcity of these sneakers fuels their desirability, turning them into instant collector's items.

Limited-run sneakers are not just about owning a rare pair of shoes; they're about exclusivity, status, and the thrill of the chase. They represent a piece of sneaker history, a tangible connection to a cultural moment. The more limited the run, the more coveted the sneaker becomes, and the higher its resale value soars.

Lot #147.
The Air Jordan 5 Retro Supreme Desert Camo is ready to blend in or stand out thanks to its durable cloth construction and carries all the influence of the Jordan Brand with the unmistakable notoriety of one of the leading luxury streetwear brands ever.

Keeping the package simple, this collaboration released in October 2015, and sees a fresh take on the Jordan 5 Retro thanks to its subtle design elements such as the translucent mesh netting on the side panels that feature part of the iconic “Supreme” logo tucked behind it.

Around the lateral side of the sneakers, you're met with a dash of color thanks to the speckled red sharkteeth design while the traditional “23” branding is replaced with “94.” These are an instant pick-up for any sneaker lover."

BRAND: AIR JORDAN
MODEL: JORDAN 5 RETRO
STYLE: 824371-201
TYPE: MID
COLORWAY: DESERT CAMO/FIRE RED-BLACK
COMPOSITION: DURABLE CLOTH/RUBBER
SIZE: 11.5
CONDITION: WITHOUT BOX
RELEASE DATE: 10/16/2015

Accompanied by a commemorative shoebox and a Certificate of Authenticity hand signed by Rick Ro$$. PROVENANCE From the Personal Sneaker Collection of Rick Ross

Sneakers, Air Jordan, Bossed-Up Kicks

What to Look for in Grail-Worthy Sneakers

So, what sets a grail-worthy sneaker apart from the rest? Here's a rundown of the key factors that sneakerheads consider when searching for their next holy grail:

Collaboration: Collaborations between brands, designers, or artists often result in unique and highly sought-after sneakers. Partnerships like Nike x Off-White, Supreme, Adidas x Kanye West (Yeezy), Adidas x Pharrell Williams, or Air Jordan collaborations with Travis Scott are prime examples of such coveted releases.

Storytelling: Every grail-worthy sneaker has a story to tell. Whether it's a tribute to a cultural icon like the Air Jordan 1 "Banned" or a celebration of a historic event like the Nike Dunk Low "Paris," the story behind a sneaker adds depth and meaning to its appeal.

Design and Innovation: Grail-worthy sneakers push the boundaries of design and innovation. They feature cutting-edge materials like Nike's Flyknit or Adidas' Primeknit, groundbreaking technologies like Nike's Air cushioning or Adidas' Boost technology, and unique aesthetics that set them apart from the crowd.

Cultural Impact: Some sneakers transcend their status as mere footwear and become cultural icons. Air Jordans, with their association with Michael Jordan and basketball culture, are a prime example of this phenomenon. Other Nikes like the Air Max 90 or Adidas classics like the Stan Smith have also achieved iconic status due to their widespread popularity and influence on fashion.

Historical Significance: Sneakers that mark a significant moment in sneaker history are highly coveted by collectors. This could be the first release of a groundbreaking technology like the Nike Air Max 1, a shoe worn by a legendary athlete like the Converse Chuck Taylor All-Stars worn by basketball players in the early days, or a design that revolutionized the sneaker industry like the Adidas Superstar.

In this lot: Two (2) pairs of sneakers

Presenting, the Air Jordan "Doernbecher" Pack, exclusively from Julien's Auctions.

Air Jordan 10 Retro "Doernbecher" Sneakers

The Air Jordan 10 Retro Doernbecher was released in November 2023 and is a sneaker that was designed by Daniel Pena, a patient at Doernbecher Children's Hospital in Portland, Oregon. The shoe's construction features a round toe, a lace-up front fastening, a brand-embossed tongue, and a durable rubber sole, completing a stylish and personalized design.

The shoe emerged as part of the Doernbecher Freestyle initiative, which gives young patients at the hospital the opportunity to create Nike apparel. The initiative contributes the proceeds to support Doernbecher Children's Hospital.

The Doernbecher Jordan 10 Retro's design features Pena's initials, DP, prominently displayed on the upper ankle, and the striking red tire tread on the heel tab was drawn from his BMX inspiration. A translucent outsole, blending shades of red and purple, adds a unique visual element to the shoe, while the glossy camo print mirrors Pena's passion for video games, and adds further character.

BRAND: AIR JORDAN
MODEL: JORDAN 10 RETRO
STYLE: 636214-066
TYPE: HIGH
COLORWAY: BLACK/GYM RED
COMPOSITION: LEATHER/RUBBER
SIZE: 12
CONDITION: UNWORN, WITHOUT BOX
RELEASE DATE: 11/23/2013

Air Jordan 2 Retro "Doernbecher Peacock" Sneakers

The Air Jordan 2 Retro "Doernbecher Peacock" sneakers were released in November 2007 as a collaboration between Nike and OHSU Doernbecher Children's Hospital in Portland, Oregon, thorough the Doernbecher Freestyle initiative, which gives young patients at the hospital the opportunity to create Nike apparel, and contributes the proceeds to support Doernbecher Children's Hospital.

These coveted sneakers were designed by Sheridan Brenton, a 15-year-old who had over 40 surgeries to fix his injuries following a car accident.

The sneaker's design features a paisley print upper, with black snakeskin and suede details, and a printed 35 on the inner tongues to honor Brenton's jersey number.

BRAND: AIR JORDAN
MODEL: JORDAN 2 RETRO
STYLE: 318304-071
TYPE: 3/4
COLORWAY: BLACK/PRO GOLD-LUCKY GREEN
COMPOSITION: LEATHER/SUEDE/RUBBER
SIZE: 11
CONDITION: WITHOUT BOX, MISSING RIGHT INSOLE
RELEASE DATE: 11/09/2007

PROVENANCE From the Personal Sneaker Collection of Rick Ross

Sneakers, Air Jordan

The Thrill of the Hunt (Air Jordan, Nike, & Adidas Edition)

For many sneakerheads, the Air Jordan line holds a special place in their hearts. These iconic sneakers, first released in 1985, revolutionized the sneaker industry and became synonymous with basketball culture. Rare Air Jordans like the "Shattered Backboard" or limited collaborations with artists like KAWS or Eminem are considered holy grails by collectors, commanding astronomical prices in the resale market.

Nike and Adidas also have their fair share of grail-worthy sneakers. Limited editions like the Nike SB Dunk Low "Freddy Krueger" or collaborations with designers like Virgil Abloh for Nike or Pharrell Williams for Adidas are highly sought-after by collectors and often sell out within minutes of their release.

Lot #299.
The Adidas Yeezy 950 Boot is a hybrid boot designed by Rick Ross collaborator, Kanye West, that blends design elements from a duck boot and a military boot. It features a high-cut upper that is lined with leather and canvas for durability and support, and is made with black rubber and ballistic nylon mesh.

These pickups are highly sought after in any season.

BRAND: ADIDAS YEEZY
MODEL: 950
STYLE: AQ4830
TYPE: BOOTS
COLORWAY: CHOCOLATE/CHOCOLATE-CHOCOLATE
COMPOSITION: RUBBER/BALLISTIC MESH/SUEDE
SIZE: 12
CONDITION: UNWORN, WITHOUT BOX
RELEASE DATE: 10/29/2015

PROVENANCE From the Personal Sneaker Collection of Rick Ross

Sneakers, Adidas

Spotting Authentic Sneakers: A Guide for Collectors

With the rise of counterfeit sneakers, it's crucial for collectors to be able to distinguish between authentic and fake pairs. Here are some tips to help you spot the real deal:

Buy from Reputable Sources: Purchase sneakers from authorized retailers or trusted online marketplaces that guarantee authenticity.

Inspect the Packaging: Authentic sneakers come in high-quality boxes with correct logos, labels, and SKU numbers. Check for any inconsistencies or signs of tampering.

Examine the Shoe: Look for precise stitching, quality materials, and correct branding. Pay attention to details like the logo placement, font, and overall craftsmanship.

Compare with Official Photos: Compare the sneaker with official product photos to identify any discrepancies in color, shape, or details.

Use Online Authentication Services: Several online platforms offer authentication services for sneakers. You can submit photos of your shoes to these services for verification by experts.

Lot #553.
A creation from the late Virgil Abloh done in collaboration with Off-White, this pair of Nike Air Max 90 is no ordinary sneaker.

Its debut in August 2017 spurred a hype that reverberated throughout the sneaker community. Taking an already iconic silhouette, Abloh perfectly implemented a design language only seen on paper in sneaker sketches and brought it to life with his use of a variety of swatches and materials that typically don’t make their way to the visible parts of the sneaker.

Many panels once reserved for interior components of sneaker construction are presented as hero highlights and feature elements of this unique design. Flawless stitching and material layering dominate the upper while an icy midsole and bottom give this timeless look an undeniable appeal.

BRAND: NIKE
MODEL: AIR MAX 90
STYLE: AA7293-100
TYPE: LOW
COLORWAY: SAIL/WHITE-MUSLIN
COMPOSITION: FOAM/SUEDE/MESH/RUBBER/PLASTIC
SIZE: 11.5
CONDITION: WITHOUT BOX
RELEASE DATE: 09/09/2017

PROVENANCE From the Personal Sneaker Collection of Rick Ross

Sneakers, Nike

Sneaker collecting isn't just about owning shoes; it's a nod to the passion, dedication, and a deep appreciation for sneaker culture. It's about connecting with a global community of like-minded individuals who share the same love for sneakers.

Whether you're a seasoned collector or a budding sneakerhead, remember this: the rarest kicks are not just shoes; they're works of art, cultural artifacts, and symbols of personal expression.

Check out our "Push It to the Limit–Luxury & Lifestyle: A Rick Ross Auction," which features a trove of the coolest and rarest sneakers from his Personal Collection – all up for grabs, with a portion of auction proceeds to benefit the Boss Up Grant Program presented by The Creative Collective NYC. Cop and rock what you like, and stay true to your own individual style. Register and bid today. Happy hunting.

A poster for Julien's Auctions with Rick Ross

PUSH IT TO THE LIMIT

LUXURY & LIFESTYLE - A RICK RO$$ AUCTION

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