I think I am going to take this one a little personal if that is okay with ya’ll. I have spoken about many sneaker silhouettes, sneaker brands, collections, and collaborations, but when I talk about New Balance, it’s all nostalgia in my head. I remember it just like yesterday when I got my first pair of New Balance sneakers! This was back in the 90s, I was just a little kid that didn’t know much about this sneaker culture or even the sneaker brand itself. My first pair of the 1600s model silver series had translucent rubber on the outer sole, shades of gray, a rounded shape, and the “N” logo in a smaller size. It was beautiful and I can say it was love at first sight. And from then till now, I have always needed a pair of New Balance in my rotation.
The model was such a success to my generation that it became a culture on its own, but to be honest, New Balance to me is a culture inside a culture. Every single true sneakerhead understands the story of the brand from the beginning. In Boston, Massachusetts, an English immigrant named William J. Riley founded the New Balance Arch Support Company. The company focused on producing specialist arch supports and orthopedic footwear to give customers greater comfort and ‘New Balance’ has become an iconic symbol in fashion, an iconic symbol of the culture on its own. It is the “New Balance in lifestyle”.
No one can explain when someone has a true love for a brand. Seeing a model such as the 1600s come back only brought good memories to me, but also brought childhood memories and sensation. I can remember it just like yesterday, the whole fit: Polo Ralph Lauren Polo t-shirt with the 501 Levi jeans – back then, if you had that combo, you were the flightiest on the room (Hey! I still put that outfit together here and there). But I still need to find a pair in my size, NB please can help me out?
I’m completely in love with the direction NB is taking, with the new collaborations, retro models, and colors ways. The push they did that relaunched the basketball department a few years ago with Kwai Learned, was spot on and perfect timing. Since then, they were able to capture the attention of many. And now retro-ing the basketball silhouettes with the model 550 and soon to be released 650R, how can you not love the brand. Btw, the 550 was my last pickup from the brand, the Navy colorway is definitely in my rotation.
I can go a little further! We all know that collaboration in the sneaker world in the era that we live in is key, and guess what, New Balance masters the movement! New Balance puts such a big emphasis on partnership. Let me name just a few: Kith, Bodega, Aimé Leon Dore, Butter, Patta, concepts, Stussy, Nice Kicks, Solebox, Collete, Sneaker freeke. Should I keep going? To be honest – and this is my personal opinion – New Balance is one of the pioneers of sneaker collaborations in the game. The relationships made in the culture are insane, New Balance has collaborated with some of the most well-known brands and stores all over the world.
When I tell my friends that I love the brand, they look at me with surprise. New Balance will always be in my top 3. What can I say, they bring a “New Balance” in my life.
Diego Aguiar @di.r.a