The lay of the land in 2006.
It 2006 chasing sneakers was new to many, but wasn’t new to us. For those of us who were into sneakers and obsessed with them in a weirdo sort of way, the thought of spending a healthy portion of our income on footwear was nothing out of the norm. It was all very underground and low-key with little people outside of our circles understanding our obsession.Sports Illustrated May 14, 1990 issue – “Your Sneakers Of Your Life”
Sure, you had the May 14, 1990 issue of Sports Illustrated titled “Your Sneakers or Your Life” and the year before the New York Post cover the release of the Pigeon Dunk dubbing it a “Sneaker frenzy”, but besides those two printed moments, the mainstream media was pretty much out of the loop with the underground sneaker culture. But despite the outside world knowing much about the culture of kicks, the business was at a tipping point in 2006 primed for launch.New York Post front page from February 23, 2005
ALIFE’s first footwear project came in 2003 when they joined forces with the relatively newly formed Adidas Originals to create four sneakers bearing their name, branding, and stamp of approval. But even that initial set was far different from what was to come for their next sneaker project.
By 2006, nicknames for sneakers were not new, but in history they had always been decided by the people. Everything from the easiest to remember or most distinguishing color in the colorway listed on the box or the collaborating party, the names for shoes were rather simple and were just a way to distinguish one shoe from another when talking with someone about the shoes. When ALIFE brought their version of the Reebok Court Victory Pump, they branded it into something bigger.