Women Are Running the Game ...
From a Presidential hopeful to powerful and sexy musicians and streetwear lines...sneakers are just one way we've got the world on lock.
by Rachel Smith
Same game, different mind frame, that’s the way it goes right? Well now the ladies are in complete control. We’ve successfully redefined our image on our own terms and at this point in the game… there’s no turning back. Aside from people like Missy Elliott and Fergie having the music scene on lock, we also have our first female Presidential hopeful, Hillary Clinton.
But the ball most certainly does not stop rolling there. The fashion industry which has been historically main stream and saturated by males has taken a turn right into the streets and has earned itself a brand new swag. With brands like Hellz Bellz, Too Fly, Married to the MOB, and your very own, Female Sneaker Fiend, holding the game in a one arm choke hold, there is no longer any room left to breathe, and the world has no choice but to shut up and listen.
While each of these brands has their own flair, one thing all of them have in common are the women that control them. Instead of hiding behind their sexuality, they’ve managed to embrace it and still have a professional appeal that isn’t only a front for something less spectacular. Purposely or not, they’ve proven that women can and will do anything men can do but better. These lady execs have taken a mix of skater-inspired fashion and urban culture, thrown some 80’s color on it, and turned it into something completely new and different.
Even Gwen Stefani who is known mostly for her outrageous hair styles and keen fashion sense has opted to dive head first into the sneaker industry. She, along with Royal Elastics, has developed a sneaker bears the same name as her hit album “Love.Angel.Music.Baby.” The shoes includes individual logos and occasionally 24 carrot gold plated hardware. But above all else, my favorite advancement for us girls would be Jordan finally releasing a line of women’s shoes. It is absolutely astonishing that a sneaker line that has been around since 1985, carrying with it the legacy of the most talented basketball player ever, Michael Jordan, is only now realizing the staying power and benefits of a line that caters to females.
Adding more fuel to the fire are the sneaker conventions like New York Sneaker Exchange. According to N.Y.S.E.’s Myspace page “ The New York Sneaker Exchange is an organization that provides opportunities for fashionistas, collectors and vendors alike to unite in a unique experience...” One of the most memorable parts of these sneaker events is seeing how some sneaker heads are creating their own sneaker styles by customizing their kicks. These custom kicks are not only shoes, they are literally wearable art. If Michelangelo were alive today, I can almost guarantee that he’d be painting sneakers instead of church roofs.
Growing up in Atlanta, as unbelievable as this may seem, I never knew that there were so many brands of sneakers and things to do with them. In fact they weren’t even referred to as sneakers. We called them “tennis shoes”; until I moved to New York and learned that only old people use that phrase. But whatever you call them, the sneaker epidemic is spreading, and it’s not limiting itself to just the United States.
Lady Sovereign, an up and coming rapper hailing from the UK, is a definite sneaker head. She told Miss Hipstah of BC Music, “I only wear Adidas. So, I just got these ones made by Adidas, and they’ve got lights in the stripes. And I’m the only person like, rockin’ a pair of 'em… So I’m gonna set a trend. I’m never gonna be able to get them in this country cause they’ll think I’m a shoe bomber. Cause they have the little battery things in the sole and everything.”
Lady Sovereign is not the only one setting trends. Gabriella Davi-Khorasanee, owner of Mama Clothing, has even gone as far as creating nail polish to match the color of her kicks. In order to bring the polish to life she teamed up with Juicy Cosmetics, saying that “everything from the colors we chose, to the packaging, to the promotional photos were influenced by sneaker culture.” (Read the full Mama interview.) All in all the sneaker game is not only a lifestyle, it’s a business as well. In the words of Leah McSweeney (CEO of MOB) “Men are the New Women.” (Read the full Leah interview.)
Peace and Love, Rachel.
Lady Sovereign quote: http://blogcritics.org/archives/2006/08/11/133408.php