Shoes give us a connection to music, sports and have even developed a culture of their own. They can also be seen as works of art. A lot of planning goes into the design of shoes, especially sneakers. Designers must take into consideration the materials, shape, color and functionality of the footwear they’re creating. Sneakers of today are so much different than 50 years ago. They incorporate the latest technology and futuristic themes, resulting in some truly out-of-this world designs. It’s hard to keep track of all the shoes that have been released this year. From highly anticipated releases by celebrities and professional basketball players, to re-releases of some of the classics, this list rounds up 10 of the coolest shoes of 2015. Which ones do you wish to add to your collection?
10. Concepts X New Balance 997 ‘Luxury Goods’
Concepts, a Cambridge-based brand, teamed up with the well-known American shoe company, New Balance, to create the 997 ‘Luxury Goods’ sneaker, which was released in February 2015. The shoe is inspired by the luxurious French brand Hermes, whose signature logo and Birkin bag is orange. The sneaker includes a combination of vibrant orange pig suede and high-quality smooth orange and tan leather. The design features a grey reflective undersole and logo, as well as a patterned insole. The monochromatic orange is contrasted by a white midsole. These sneakers are a must-have if you’re a fan of both luxury and comfortable street style. They retail for about $235.
9. Chuck Taylor All-Star II
Converse has been around longer than your grandparents and the American shoe company still continues to impress. The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star II is everything you love about the original with a bit of an upgrade. The company aimed for comfort with this new design and it seemed to have accomplished its goal. The new shoe features a Lunarlon sockliner, which cushions and supports the feet, micro-suede lining and a memory foam-padded, non-slip tongue. Everyone, from rockers to rappers and basketball players, has been spotted wearing this classic shoe, so it would be a shame not to include it on this list. These new and improved Chuck Taylors stay true to the brand’s affordable pricing and retail for about $75.
8. HTM x Nike Kobe X 10 Elite Low
HTM signifies the collaboration between designer Hiroshi Fujiwara, designer Tinker Hatfield and Nike CEO Mark Parker. Released in April 2015, the HTM x Nike Kobe X Elite Low is the tenth in a line of impressive shoes by basketball legend, Kobe Bryant. The shoes feature an incomparable cushioning system that combines Nike Lunarlon cushioning, Nike Zoom Air and Nike Free-inspired siping. The outsole features hundreds of “nodules” that function to provide optimal traction. There is also a Flyknit upper which provides breathability and support. The shoe comes in three interesting colorways: ‘shark jaw,’ ‘race car’ and ‘mamba arrowhead.’ These are three symbols used to represent Bryant’s precision and brilliance. These cool kicks retail for about $250.
7. Concepts X Asics Gel-Lyte V 8-Ball “Blow”
Another marvelous creation by Concepts, this collaboration with Asics took inspiration from the film Blow, starring Johnny Depp. The blood red midsole represent the violence of the drug industry. This reference extends to the insides of the shoe, where red splotches are found. This is contrasted by the white suede upper, which represents a certain drug used in the movie. There are also hints of 3M along the sides of the sneaker. This shoe is so cool that each of the 3 sets of laces comes packaged in a vial. The shoe was released in January for a retail price of approximately $200.
6. Adidas Tubular
The Adidas Tubular X was released in August 2015, at an affordable price of $120. When you look at this shoe, you can instantly see that it’s bound to be a classic. The design takes a retro sneaker and jazzes it up. The Tubular X features a heel stabilizer element, circular-knit textile upper, translucent rubber heel detail and of course, a tubular outsole which provides optimal traction. The X-shaped nubuck overlay is what gives this version of the Tubular its name. Several colorways have been released including “Camo” and “Black.”
5. Under Armour Curry 1
Warriors superstar Stephen Curry, may not have the title of ‘legend’ as of yet, but with his own signature shoe, he just may be on his way. Released in February 2015, the Under Armour Curry 1 features a herringbone-patterned outsole, which provides optimal grip and vents around the forefoot area that provide breathability. However, one of the biggest selling points of this sneaker is the cushioning, which is a combination of the Micro G and Charged foam layer systems. It also has extra padding at the heels and an Anafoam upper. The shoe, which has been praised for its high performance, comes in numerous vibrant colorways and currently retails for about $120.
4. Adidas Yeezy Boost 750
One of the most anticipated sneaker releases of 2015 was the Adidas Yeezy Boost 750, designed by the one and only Kanye West. The high-top sneaker was released in a grey/white colorway in February 2015, at a retail price of $350. An all-black colorway was confirmed in December 2015. The highly demanded sneaker was released in a limited quantity, so the re-sell prices have been staggering, with some selling for upwards of $5,000! The shoe features high-quality suede, a midfoot elastic strap, a rubber outsole and, of course, boost cushioning technology. But, it was likely the hype around Mr. West himself that made sneakerheads go crazy over this shoe.
3. Nike Lebron 13
It seems like professional basketball players have the coolest signature sneakers, and LeBron James is no exception. The Cleveland Cavaliers baller released his 13th signature shoe in September 2015 for a retail price of $200. Composed of hyperposite material and a mesh upper with Flywire cables for flexibility, the shoe features hexagonal Zoom Air units that provide cushioning. LeBron even added some personal touches to the shoe, such as an inscription that reads, “LeBron James Akronite 12/84.” This is a reference to the basketball player’s hometown, Akron, and his birthday. With numerous colorways, including “Written in the Stars,” “Home” and “Friday the 13th” and others, there is sure to be one that fits your personality.
2. Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG Chicago
A list of cool sneakers would be incomplete without any Air Jordans on it. And 2015 was definitely the year of Jordan re-releases. One of the coolest re-releases was that of the iconic Air Jordan 1 retro high OG Chicago, which came out in May 2015 with a price tag of $160. As Jordan fans may know, the original Air Jordan 1 was released in 1985 and has since been one of the most popular sneakers on the market. This recent release features full leather upper, an Air-Sole unit in the heel and rubber outsole for traction. It comes in the classic red/white/black colorway, the colors of the team which gave birth to the legend that is Michael Jordan.
1. Adidas Yeezy Boost 350
As if the success of one Adidas Yeezy Boost wasn’t enough, Kanye had to push his limits even further to create yet another. This time, however, he decided to go with a low-cut sneaker. The Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 was released in June 2015 at a retail price of $200. The Boost 350 is currently available in 3 colorways: ‘Moonrock,’ ‘Pirate Black’ and ‘Turtledove.’ Besides the obvious Boost cushioning technology, the shoe features the breathable and flexible Adidas Primeknit technology. These shoes are so popular that they have been spotted on the feet of countless celebrities, including the Kardashians (of course), the Beckhams, Joe Jonas, the Weeknd, Bieber and Pharrell. The Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 was even named ‘Shoe of the Year’ at the Footwear News 29th Annual Achievement Awards ceremony. Now, that’s one cool shoe!