Happy new year everyone. After a few months of inactivity on the sneaker front, it’s about time to update you all on what’s been going on. While taking a break from the constant ramblings on Twitter, I was rediscovering life in Florence, Italy, my home base for the Fall 2014 semester. Rightfully so, I focused on real world matters, like traveling across Europe, the finest culinary offerings of Italy, and my studies, before attempting to keep my hold on a world from which I was several time-zones and thousands of miles away. I still followed the latest news, and even contributed some to Finish Line’s blog, but from quite afar. Alas, my semester abroad has come to a close, and the clock has started ticking on my surely hectic 2015. First, though, I’d like to reflect on the past year just a bit.
Even if I’m not going to write up an full-fledged list, I will say that 2014 had some gems. For new silhouettes, the adidas ZX Flux was king. Sleek build, just technical enough with the heel cage and embossed stripes, endless possibilities with the upper, and only $90? No question that adidas hit it out of the ball park. I only got my pair (the blue Italia Independent collaboration) with a couple months to spare in the year, but right away, I got the hype. They’re real comfy, too. Nike wasn’t left out of my equation, as I’m a big fan of the Kobe IX. Bringing Flyknit into the basketball space seemed like an oddball mission, but Nike accomplished it with a stunning model fit for the Black Mamba. If only I could have gotten my hands on the Masterpiece iteration for a reasonable price. Also, an honorable mention to the Kyrie 1. A very modern silhouette for Nike’s foray into the next generation of signature ballers. As far as retro sneakers go, my favorite drop was a Ronnie Fieg and Dover Street Market collaboration with Puma: the Trinomic XT-2 in black and white. Simple, yes, but with a luxurious feel and plush leather upper, the perfect beat-around shoe for my time abroad. This one quickly became a go-to for me as I traveled around Europe. After all, it’s pretty difficult to find a outfit that doesn’t match such a simple sneaker.
Obviously, that’s nowhere near as much as I have had to say about any of the past years in sneakers. Perhaps 2014 was not that great for footwear. More likely, though, it’s due to my ever-changing perspective on sneakers. As a 15-year-old always looking for something to collect, sneakers were a fun outlet, and a form of expression that I never explored prior. I lived in the moment, buying sneakers based off of immediate utility. Unlike my 20-year-old self, I never thought about how many I actually needed or if the sneakers would be effortless to wear with any outfit. Nowadays, with the sneaker resale market so apparent, changing priorities and some new passions, I’m buying less sneakers and scaling down my collection. It’s still fun to observe the excitement from the sidelines, but at the end of the day, a lot of embracing sneaker culture comes down to going out and buying new pairs. Maybe these next twelve months will have some better sneakers in store.
As many people do, I set out some goals for the new year. Getting the most enjoyment out of my ever-decreasing time left at Colgate and figuring out what path I’d like to take after college are two huge ones, but I’d also like to keep up with my writing efforts. Whether that’s reflected on here, on Finish Line’s blog, or elsewhere, I don’t care, but I’ve been writing on the web since 2003, and the day that comes to an end is nowhere near in sight. Stay tuned, and let’s all start off the new year right.