Balenciaga’s Paris Sneaker, a limited edition made from rubber and destroyed cotton, is a rare sneaker that can inspire both awe and hatred.
The shoe, which loosely looks like a Converse All-Star, costs 1,290 pounds (1.850 dollars, 1.450 euros) and is just as distressed and worn out as its name implies. These trainers appear to have been retired long ago, even though they are not luxury items.
The description of the Balenciaga shoe is found in the product details section. It has rippings across the fabric, a Balenciaga logo in colour contrast on its sole, and an embossed size at the back. It was manufactured in China.
The luxury house, based in Paris, offers many sneaker versions, including low-cut and mule versions. There are only 100 pairs of the ‘full destroyed’ edition.
Luxurious items are designed to make you look poor.
Fashion watchdog Diet Prada quickly called the shoe out on Instagram. Users commented, “I guess it is only okay to appear poor, but not be poor.” One user called it a joke. One user said it smelled like rich people romanticizing the poor and homelessness. Another wrote, “I hope they practice waste-led design and fished the sneakers straight from landfills because that would make them genius.”
This is exactly where the antipathy comes into play. It will appear as though the item came from a landfill, with the fabric destroyed. This will make it look like it was worn for a very short time.
The shoe looks as though it has barely survived the long journey of its wearer.
Balenciaga claimed that its Paris sneaker was meant to last a lifetime. However, the customer who pays nearly 1,300 pounds for a shoe likely has many other shoes if they don’t have an entire wardrobe. They are certainly not the market segment that will wear a trend until it is gone. They would be just as marketable without branding.
There is no shame in taking off your boots.
The Ukraine invasion has made the world’s refugee crisis worse. Many people flee with little, sometimes just one, possessions. There is no pride in taking off one’s boots at the end of a journey. It is only weariness and frustration.
Balenciaga was last year accused of cultural appropriation for a pair of sweatpants that retailed at over 900 pounds. The Paris runway featured a leather bag that looked like a bin liner in its latest collection.
Fashion houses have used this tactic to increase profits and market their luxury products for years. It’s also extremely tacky.
It is not often a sneaker that can cause equal parts awe and antipathy, but Balenciaga’s latest limited edition Paris Sneaker release, made of destroyed cotton and rubber, has done just that.
The shoe in question, which loosely resembles a Converse All-Star, retails for 1,290 pounds (1,850 dollars, 1,450 euros) and is as intentionally distressed and worn-out as its name suggests. To most eyes outside the luxury sphere, these trainers look as if they ended their lifespan long ago.