I’ve been thinking about taking on this project for almost a decade, and now that it’s finally come to fruition, I figured Sneaker Headquarters deserves some sort of explanation before I jump right into it.
I’ve always loved sneakers. Growing up I would always try to get my mom to buy me the hottest Jordans or Nikes, but unless they were on the clearance racks it just wasn’t happening. The first pair of Jordans I ever got were the Nike Air Jordan 10 “Dark Shadow” back in 1995. My mom thought they were hideous, but they were J’s, they were like 30% off, and they were the most comfortable pair of basketball sneakers I had ever worn at the time. They were beautiful to me.
I played soccer and basketball, so I would get one pair of cleats that I’d wear until the studs fell off, but my mom would get me a new pair of basketball sneakers every year that would turn into my everyday kicks when the season was over. When I made the 7th grade CYO basketball team (I didn’t think I’d make it. I could barely dribble with my left hand and couldn’t make a layup with my left at tryouts) my mom let me pick out any pair I wanted. Reggie Miller was my favorite player (odd for a Knicks fan, I know, but he was a killer) so of course I wanted what he was wearing at the time- the Nike Air Money:
Now I knew the whites were impractical and would get scuffed the fuck up and ruined quickly, so I went with the black version of the Nike Air Money, which is actually re-releasing this month:
Looking back, these kicks looked ridiculous and probably weren’t the most functional basketball sneakers, but I loved them. They were different. Plus Reggie the Knick killer wore ’em, so I thought they were cool. These were the first sneakers that sent me down a deep rabbit hole. The Nike Air Money brought out the sneakerhead in me.
I took care of those Nike Air Money kicks. I wore them until my Junior year of high school. I remember a kid asking me why I re-bought the same pair of shoes again and again, but they were always my original pair from 7th grade (beats me how I had a size 10.5 foot at the time and still do today, but that’s besides the point). I wore them until the outsole wore out entirely in the heels and they became unwearable, but the uppers always looked fresh. Man I miss those sneakers.
In 1999, I was 14 years old and high-speed internet wasn’t even a thing for most households yet. I still remember the screeching sounds of connecting to AOL and surfing the internet on a dial-up modem. It was at this time that I signed up for an eBay account, as well as Yahoo Auctions (that was a thing, I swear), and began buying sneakers online on the cheap. I didn’t have a credit card or PayPal or anything like that. I would literally send people cash in an envelope in regular mail, and they would send me the sneakers. As stupid as it was, I never got burned doing it. Shout out to the guy who sold me a pair of Reebok Pump Omnis for like $20 shipping included and didn’t just steal my money.
I kept deal hunting on auction sites throughout high school and college to support my sneaker habit. It wasn’t until I started working that I could buy the kicks I really wanted. The rare Nikes and Jordans. In 2007 I managed to cop a pair of my favorite sneakers of all-time, the Nike Air Max 1 x Atmos Elephant. They were simply beautiful. I loved everything about them. The blue matched my eyes, the black was practical, and the elephant print just set it off. This was before the internet sneaker re-sale culture really blew up, so rare sneakers were easier to get at the time. All you needed was the time, money, and savvy to pick up the kicks you wanted. Had I known how rare the Nike Air Max 1 x Atmos Elephants were, I would have taken better care of them and held onto them. I wore them until they were beat down and re-sold them on eBay in 2010 for a few dollars more than I paid for them.
I know I went off on a huge tangent, but to understand the design of Sneaker Headquarters I wanted you to know how I got to this point. I wanted to incorporate the love I have for sneakers into the design of this website, and what better shoe to base it off of than the Nike Air Max 1 x Atmos? I didn’t make the blue the same shade as this hue is a little easier on the eyes than the jade coloring, but the black and the elephant print, that’s all incorporated.
I don’t know where exactly I’m going with this website, or this post for that matter, but I just wanted to put something out there that was real, and continue to keep it real as long as this site is up and running. I’ll be selling shoes out of my personal collection (generally size 10-10.5), posting reviews of shoes I buy, and asking the sneakerhead community about whether the latest releases are a cop or drop. Sneaker Headquarters is going to be a place where sneakerheads can come together and enjoy the culture, I promise you that. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the blog.