With today’s news that adidas and Kanye West have together agreed to terms on a new long-term partnership of expanded resources and product launches, we can expect to see nothing but adidas-branded Yeezy models from here on out.
Of course, Kanye West has partnered with several brands over the past decade, each highlighted by unique and thoughtful unveils along the way to debut new models and colorways alike.
Whether it was a Grammy’s performance, his very own New York Fashion Week takeover, strategic music video placements, or of course, Kanye simply walking down the street in a new sneaker, the debuts have been varied through the years. Check out how every Kanye shoe has been unveiled, and let us know your favorite colorways in the comments section below.
Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/White Prototype
Event: 2008 Grammy Awards
When: February 10, 2008
Rocking an LED outfit before ‘lit’ was the wave and playing “Stronger” with Daft Punk before EDM was the rage, Kanye West rocked the crowd at the 2008 Grammy Awards while debuting the then unknown Nike Air Yeezy 1 prototype. In addition, he also brought the house down with an emotional performance of “Hey Mama.” The music and the shoe both left their mark and both received acclaim.
Nike Air Yeezy 1 “Net”
Event: The Ellen Show
When: October 7, 2008
On set to premier the “Love Lockdown” music video, Kanye also treated the Ellen guests to the first look at the “Net” Nike Air Yeezy 1. Years later during the Yeezus listening party, Kanye would speak on the original concept of the Yeezy as bringing a Lanvin color palette to a sportswear sneaker. This makeup serves as the best example of just that.
Louis Vuitton Collection
When: January 2009
You know how Kanye talks about breaking the internet? In a way that really happened when his Louis Vuitton collection first started leaking on the web because most of the videos, photos and sites that they surfaced on no longer exist.
From a paparazzi video of Kanye leaving a Louis store and casually mentioning his collab to a laptop selfie on his blog, the collection leaked out in both informal and formal fashion over the course of the month of January. The entire collection was named after close friends from his camp and launched in July of 2009.
Nike Air Yeezy 1 “Zen Grey”
photos via Don C and Marcus Troy via The Shoe Game
Event: The Internet
When: March 13, 2009
The original Nike Air Yeezy didn’t just happen when the blogosphere, online sneaker culture and streetwear scene exploded, it was gasoline on the flame. Such being said, OG (and current) Kanye camp curators/influencers Don C, Ibn Jasper and Marcus Troy were among the first to have the “Zen Grey” colorway of the Yeezy. Photos first hit their personal blogs and spread like wildfire to the rest of the web.
Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink
Event: “Knock You Down” Music Video
When: April 6, 2009
Having shaved the shag but kept the kicks, the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink made its on-foot debut on Kanye West in the “Knock You Down” music video. While the shoe had been seen in shots from Complex before and confirmed as a retail release, this was one of the first times Ye actually wore it.
Nike Air Yeezy 2 Black/Solar Red
Event: “The Black Mamba” Mini-Movie
When: February 19, 2011
After announcing their would be an Air Yeezy 2 on the set of the “Amazing” music video, speed boat dreams turned to internet realities when Kanye debuted the shoe in Robert Rodriguez’s “The Black Mamba” mini-movie. Playing foil to Kobe Bryant, “The Boss,” aka Yeezy, gets tough in the second signature of his namesake.
Nike Air Yeezy 2 Black/White Prototype
Event: Coachella Performance
When: April 17, 2011
Though never released, the Black/White Yeezy 2s made their official debut on stage during his famous Coachella set. Donning the all-red “Power” suit, this shoe is also dubbed the “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasty” colorway as it coincides with the making of the album and the fact that Cyhi the Prynce has a PE pair with album tagging on it. Shout outs to Chris Lee who was one of the first to spot this.
Nike Air Yeezy 2 “Pure Platinum”
Event: 2011 MTV VMAs
When: August 28, 2011
Rocking the stage with big brother Jay Z, The Throne made their live TV debut and so did the the “Pure Platinum” Nike Air Yeezy 2. A very thankful and happy Kanye West accepted awards and performed “Otis” in the silver sneakers that would cause pandemonium for months on end.
Nike Air Yeezy 2 “Red October”
Event: Saturday Night Live
When: May 18, 2013
First previewed on Instagram by Simon Ou and later by Kim Kardashian West, the Nike Air Yeezy 2 “Red October” made its official debut on the feet of Kanye West during an intense performance on Saturday Night Live. Playing a since amended version of “Black Skinhead” as well as the pivotal “New Slaves,” Kanye rocked and shocked the crowd with material that would set the tone and attitude for the then-unreleased Yeezus album.
adidas Yeezy Boost 750
photos via Ibn Jasper
When: February 6, 2015
After leaking on an airplane months before, the adidas Yeezy Boost 750 officially hit the web as confirmed as such via on-foot photos of Kanye West from his barber/style consultant Ibn Jasper. Though the Grammy Awards (much like the original Yeezy) and RocNation party were most likely meant to be the first look, this IG unveiling served as the official debut.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 & adidas Yeezy Duck Boot 950
photos by ImaxTree via Livingly
Event: Yeezy Season 1 Show
When: February 12, 2015
On the feet of Kanye and many a model, the adidas Yeezy Boost 350 and adidas Yeezy Duck Boot 950 both debuted to the public eye at the Yeezy Season 1 Show back in February at New York Fashion Week. The major moment for Mr. West and adidas saw Kanye’s creative vision for clothing take shape in head-to-toe fashion, offering his take on grunge garb and stripped down sportswear. This was also the first time the world heard “Wolves” — his still unreleased collaboration with Sia and Vic Mensa.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “White”
photo via E! Online
Event: James Harden’s Birthday Party
When: August 25, 2015
All-white like he got the whole thing bleached, Kanye debuted quite the contrast to the “Pirate Black” Boosts by debuting what some are calling the “Beluga” adidas Yeezy Boost 350 at James Harden’s birthday party. While the theme of the evening called for blanco attire, it’s still uncertain at this point if they were a party PE or upcoming release.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “Beige”
photos by Larry Busacca and Frazer Harrison for Getty Images via Zimbio
Event: 2015 MTV Video Music Awards
When: August 30, 2015
Can’t stop, won’t stop, the Yeezy 350 rollouts continued on the red carpet of the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards. Kanye West came out with Kim Kardashian rocking all-Yeezy Season-everything to the tone of tan or rather beige. Of all the Yeezy debuts, this one may go down as the most memorable thanks to Kanye’s Video Vanguard speech in which he made a remark about running for president in 2020.
Yeezy Season 2 Heels
photos by Michael Loccisano for Getty Images via Zimbio
Event: The Rihanna Party at New York Fashion Week
When: September 10, 2015
Currently with no name and no Boost cushioning (to our knowledge), Kim Kardashian broke out a pair of heels from Yeezy Season 2 while attending New York Fashion Week festivities. At this point, it’s uncertain whether or not the fancy footwear will be released under the adidas umbrella, but according to an IG from Kim they’re Yeezy Season approved.
adidas Yeezy Boost 750 Black/Gum
photo by Larry Busacca for Getty Images via Zimbio
Event: Givenchy Spring 2016 Show at New York Fashion Week
When: September 11, 2015
Supporting fellow designer and footwear collaborator Riccardo Tisci, Kanye West took to the Givenchy Spring 2016 Show in the “Black” adidas Yeezy Boost 750 for the first time. Long the subject of wanting and Photoshops before dubbed official, the first look at the “Black” 750s sees what appears to be a nubuck/suede upper atop a translucent gum sole.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “Silver”
Event: Alexander Wang Show at New York Fashion Week
When: September 13, 2015
Eerily similar in styling to the “White” pair (we’re still waiting on confirmation to specify that they’re not the same shoe), Kanye West rocked what looks to be a “Silver” style of the adidas Yeezy Boost 350 at pal Alexander Wang’s recent show.
adidas Yeezy Duck Boot 950 Brown/Gum
photo via Team Kanye Daily
Event: New York Fashion Week
When: September 14, 2015
After going totally tonal on the first two Duck Boot designs, it appears a golden or gum sole is stamping that of Yeezy Season 2’s offering. Kanye rocked these while out and about with his wife Kim, throwing an otherwise all-black outfit for a left.
adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Light Plum” & “Chocolate”adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Light Plum” (photo via Sneaker News) adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Chocolate” (photo via Sneaker News)
Event: Yeezy Season 2 Fashion Show
When: September 16, 2015
Yeezy Season 2 continued on with many of the looks launched in Season 1 but still managed to play with and push the palette just enough. The “Light Plum” & “Chocolate” 750s serve as the highlight from the high profile show. Not too long after, T. Blake gave us a great look at the “Chocolate” colorway with a YouTube review.
adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Black”adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Black” (photo via @travisscott)
Event: Travis Scott Instagram Post
When: December 5, 2015
The adidas Yeezy Boost 750 “Black” was a bit hard to follow. After discrepancy as to whether or not these were an official colorway/would they release, all doubt was put to rest when Travi$ Scott posted a pair straight from Kanye on IG. A holiday release followed shortly after.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 Season 3 “White”adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “White” Yeezy Season 3 (photos via @kanyewest & Upscale Hype)
Event: Twitter/Kylie Jenner Makeup Launch
When: February 8, 2016
Striking similar to the pair previewed at James Harden’s birthday party and almost identical to the 550s, the adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “White” from Season 3 sees new threading on the upper and a snowy color scheme. Kanye offered an early look at these on Twitter before breaking them out at Kylie Jenner’s makeup launch party.
adidas Yeezy Boost 1050adidas Yeezy Boost 1050 (photos via @kanyewest & Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images via Zimbio)
Event: Twitter/Yeezy Season 3 Show at MSG
When: February 8/11, 2016
Initially seen during a series of pre-Yeezy Season 3 tweets from Kanye himself, the adidas Yeezy Boost 1050 was perhaps the most visible style at the MSG show. Worn by Young Thug and a handful of models, this update to the 950 features Boost cushioning — a first for boots in the Yeezy series.
adidas Yeezy Boost 350 Season 3adidas Yeezy Boost 350 Season 3 (photos by ImaxTree via Livingly)
Event: Yeezy Season 3 Show at MSG
When: February 11, 2016
Though partially previewed on Twitter leading up to the Yeezy Season 3 at MSG, the adidas Yeezy Boost 350 of said show/season got its first good look on the feet of Lil Yachty and other models. Like the “White” pair worn by Kanye before, the Season 3 350s see a different pattern on the upper (likely still Primeknit) while also offering stripe contrast on the grey pair seen above along with a Black/White makeup also seen on set.
Yeezy Season 3 BootsYeezy Season 3 Boots (left photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images via Zimbio & right photo by ImaxTree via Livingly)
Event: Yeezy Season 3 Show at MSG
When: February 11, 2016
While many (all) of us sneakerheads were hoping for Kanye to arrive at MSG in something new of the Boost variety, he switched it up in the NYC winter and rocked a new pair of boots. Arriving with Lamar Odom (a G move, by the way), Kanye debuted the Yeezy Season 3 Boots in tan while models also donned a darker version. We were able to confirm with both adidas and Kanye’s team that these are not made by the Three Stripes but are indeed a piece from Yeezy Season 3.
adidas Yeezy Boost 750 Grey/Gumadidas Yeezy Boost 750 Grey/Gum (photo via Daily Mail)
Event: Night out in NYC
When: February 14, 2016
After another amazing SNL performance, Kanye West stepped out with his wife Kim Kardashian in New York City in yet another gum-soled pair of Yeezy Boost 750s. Debuted on Valentine’ Day, this lovely colorway sees a grey upper similar to the initial 750 launch, with a gum sole showing shades of Yeezy Seasons 2 and 3. Originally spotted by Team Kanye Daily, these are yet to release.
adidas Yeezy Boost 550adidas Yeezy Boost 550 (photos via @spifftv & @frenchmontana)
Event: “Figure it Out” Music Video Shoot
When: March 4, 2016
Hanh? That ain’t Kanye, nope it was rather French Montana that debuted the adidas Yeezy Boost 550. Seen in all-white but appearing closer to grey in the photo, the revamped rendition of the very popular 350s are seemingly next up. A closer look from Spliff Tv sees a translucent sole serving as the icing on the cake of this mid top makeup.
Lead image photos by Kevin Winter & Frazer Harrison for Getty Images via Zimbio