Frayed fabric, damaged rubber, scribbles, holes, lots of dirt. These are not quite the characteristics that common sense expects from a new sneaker — not one bought at the street vendor, much less one sold for US$ 1,800, or just over R$ 9,000 at the current price. But all this, and more, is what defines the Paris Sneakers, a new limited piece by the Balenciaga brand. At least in your advertising.
The photos that have been making the rounds on social media, with two pairs falling apart, are not exactly the sneakers that will be marketed. But, in fact, this collection promises pieces with used materials. The less injured ones, by the way, are cheaper, with models starting at US$ 495 and US$ 625. The “full destroyed” is the most coveted and expensive.
In this, the brand’s strategy — led by Georgian stylist Demna Gvasalia — was officially that “Paris Sneakers are made to be worn for a lifetime”.
It is not the first time, however, that the luxury brand has taken advantage of the trash aesthetic to profit and launch new trends for some — and to star in memes in the world away from the high wheels. In fact, it’s part of a strategy to keep up, even with those who don’t consume the products directly, but who manage to stay in close contact with social media and Generation Z.
In March 2022, as part of a new collection, Balenciaga launched a boot worthy of any construction worker’s wardrobe. The black boot features white details that mimic paint splatters. It is produced in Italy with a leather lining, nylon fabric and rubber sole. The product’s design also features a rounded beak and a short barrel.
Even those who didn’t follow the Paris Fashion Week must have come across the Spanish brand’s show also in March this year. The show, which simulated a snowstorm, had models parading around with bags made from black bags, with knots similar to garbage.
In parallel with the memes, however, there is a political reading of the protest parade that echoed the beginning of the Ukrainian War and the life experience of Gvasalia, himself a former refugee.
Another recent unusual item was the Balenciaga bunch of hole-punched sweatshirt. Made with 100% organic cotton, the piece, with the brand’s logo and a single pocket, went for £950 (about R$ 6,000).
The high-heeled Crocs, on the other hand, did not impress for the destruction, but for the unusual partnership between the Spanish brand and the sandal brand to create an unusual model – but that tries to bring the comfort introduced by Covid-19 in new ways.
The companies had already worked together in 2017 to create a Crocs with a high platform — and it was priced at $800 at the time. returned to rock in reinvented models.
Not only Balenciaga starred in the memes, however. A video shows influencer Maria Luiza Borges showing a bag by Italian Bottega Veneta that, for many internet users, resembled a fluffy, wrapped towel. And quite expensive — coming here for over R$24,000. It came in green, navy blue and pink.
This type of engagement is not restricted to individual pieces either, but also appears on red carpets like the one at the Met Gala. Among the most famous participations of Balenciaga in the event was the time in which the socialite Kim Kardashian and Demna Gvasalia himself dressed in black, covering the entire body, even the face.