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    Yeezy 350

    35 articles

    The shoe that cemented Yeezy’s place in sneaker culture.


    The Yeezy 350 first dropped back in 2015 at Yeezy’s inaugural show at NYC fashion week, which was held on Valentine’s Day. The design immediately created excitement amongst the Big Apple’s fashion scene. The show also tied in with the NBA All-Star Game, which got people talking about the 350, eventually building more interest in the shoe than any previous fashion release. And with that, the Yeezy era was born.

    The 350 was officially released in June of the same year in a black and grey “Turtledove” colourway with design consulting provided by Virgil Abloh, founder of streetwear brand Off-White, and Demna Gvasalia, creative director at Balenciaga. The pared back aesthetic features a Primeknit upper with hiking-style laces of the same material and colour. Below, Boost midsoles seamlessly blend into the shoe, creating the illusion that it is one single unit. The sole aim was to create a shoe that defined its time; something with a unique design.

    Towards the latter part of 2015, the success of the Boost 350 reached its peak at the 29th Annual Achievement Awards held by Footwear News, where it won the Shoe of the Year award. Its limited release brought a cascade of hype and desire, pushing up the resale value and making the shoe a highly prized and exclusive item. 

    When Ye was learning to design shoes alongside Virgil Abloh and under the guidance of Giuseppe Zanotti, he set himself the ambitious target of making his own version of the extremely popular Nike Roshe. He even stated that he wanted to replace the Roshe. This ensured that the Yeezy 350 had a clear conceptual grounding as a comfortable, stylish lifestyle shoe. But it wasn’t until the V2 was released that Kanye got closer to making the 350 a widely accessible sneaker.

    The V2 delivered a more textured, stretchy upper with a sock-like feel that gave Ye even more creative licence to express his own ideas. To start with, he had the text “SPLY-350”, an acronym for “Saint Pablo Loves You”, woven into the side of the shoe in a digital font. He also added some fresh style elements, such as a thin, jagged stripe on one side made of synthetic monofilament material to add breathability and an enlarged midsole that was now translucent. The original “Beluga” colourway also brought vibrant colours, its orange accents melding with a pervasive neutral gunmetal to produce a classic sneaker. Since then, the V2 has become the most recognisable Yeezy silhouette thanks to the huge number of colourways and versions produced. One of the most standout of these designs was the 2018 Triple White colourway, which was released in over a million pairs and increased the popularity of the shoe amongst a much broader group of people.

    The Yeezy Boost 350 was the shoe that made Kanye West a fashion designer. He rewrote the rules on celebrity collaborations and became a respected creator in his own right. The Yeezy 350 has achieved something special: fans eagerly await the release of each new colourway, with the buzz around the design still as high as ever. The simmering hype that continues to this day confirms the 350 as one of the most important sneakers of all time.

    Rank the Yeezy 350

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