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The Most Expensive Trainers in the World

on Tue, Dec 08, 20

A pair of trainers is a wardrobe staple that is sure to never go out of style. There are thousands of colourways, designs and materials out there creating an endless array of style possibilities, meaning that there certainly is something out there for everyone. You’ll probably be well aware of how much we appreciate a pair of designer trainers, and we’re betting that you do too.

Over the years we’ve seen some incredible styles in the world of footwear, many of which have gone down in history, paving the way for future styles that will undoubtedly follow. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of the most iconic (and expensive) trainers in the world - and if you’re a trainer fanatic, this is certainly going to be one for you...

Nike Air Mag Back to the Future

Film buffs will instantly recognise these iconic kicks, as worn by Marty McFly in the second instalment of the Back to the Future series. Back in September 2011, Nike released a limited quantity of shoes, creating only 1,510 pairs. However, in 2016, the brand ran a VERY limited range of the trainers, releasing only 89 pairs in honour of the film’s 1989 release. Considered to be the most expensive trainers in the world, these futuristic footwear pieces will set you back over £19,000.

In 2018, the original left shoe - as worn by Michael J. Fox himself in the 1989 sequel - was sold on eBay, at the time owned by a Nike employee as part of their personal collection. The shoe was disintegrating and believed to be in such a fragile condition that it was made available for collection only from its location in Portland, Oregon - yet it still received over 220 bids and eventually sold for over $92,000 (over £70,000)! The money raised from the sale was donated to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s research, established by Fox after he was diagnosed with the disease in 1991. Additionally, the proceeds from both of Nike’s limited edition releases in 2011 and 2016 were also donated to Parkinson’s research.

Jordan 4 Retro UNDFTD

Los Angeles store Undefeated was the first sneaker boutique to exclusively collaborate with Nike’s Air Jordan brand (originally created for NBA star Michael Jordan in 1984, subsequently being released to the public in 1985). The end result of this 2005 collab was the Air Jordan 4, known for the military aesthetic of the moss green colourway, combined with hints of orange and black. Only 72 pairs of these were released, but the only way you could get your hands on one was to enter an in-store or online raffle. At present, these military inspired kicks will set you back $24,500.

4 Retro Eminem x Carhartt by Air Jordan

In 2015, rapper Eminem collaborated with Carhartt to mark the 15 year anniversary of The Marshall Mathers LP, the result being these ridiculously limited edition sneakers. Only available through eBay auction, only ten pairs of these kicks were made, with one pair selling at over $30,000 - and it’s likely that this figure would be even steeper now. Believe it or not, Eminem didn’t even keep a pair for himself.

Eminem x Air Jordan 4 Retro Encore

Similarly, in 2017, Air Jordan released another limited edition range of sneakers in homage to the rapper, this time, paying tribute to his 2004 album Encore. Only 50 pairs of these kicks were released, and they’re considered the rarest Air Jordan 4s to this date. Despite 50 pairs being made in total, only 23 were made available to the public, while the rest were given away to Eminem’s friends and family. In terms of what they’re worth, these iconic blue trainers have been valued at around $45,000.

Human Race NMD Pharrell x Chanel by Adidas

Human Race NMD Pharrell released a number of limited edition designs of the years, but the 2017 collab with Chanel was said to be one of the most expensive - and the most coveted. Created in collaboration with the late Karl Lagerfeld, only 500 pairs of these contrasting sneakers were made available for sale, and they also marked the first time that a man featured in one of the French fashion houses’ advertising campaigns. Initially, these sneakers were auctioned at a pop-up at Paris fashion boutique Colette for $1160, but have since been resold for an eye-watering ten times this original price.

Nike Dunk Low SB Paris

The Dunk Low SB Paris design originally came about in 1985, intended solely for basketball. However, they quickly became taken on by the skating community, and Nike redistributed the hugely popular design in 2002 in a small number of skate shops. The best thing about these sneakers? Each and every one of the 202 pairs released is unique. Thanks to French painter Bernard Buffet’s artwork and different canvas cuts, no two pairs are the same. 99% of the SB Dunk designs have increased in value over the years, and it was earlier this year that the Low ‘Paris’ design sold for a record breaking $51,950.

Kobe PE Retro Pack 8 Retro 3 by Air Jordan

Finally, we can’t look at the world’s most iconic trainers without a nod to one of the greats - the legend that is Kobe Bryant. The Kobe Air Jordans were released to commemorate the 2002/2003 NBA season, but were never actually released to the public. During this season, Bryant didn’t have any commitments with other sneaker brands, so Jordan Brand gifted him with exclusive styles such as this one. These are packed with detail, from the elephant print elements to the gold and purple Lakers inspired colouring. In terms of how much they’re worth now, you’re looking at around £11,540.

You’ve probably gotten to the end of this article hankering to treat yourself to a pair of brand new trainers - we certainly don’t blame you. We have a huge selection of designer trainers to add to your collection and complete your look, featuring your favourite brands such as Mallet, Axel Arigato and PS Paul Smith.

If you’ve loved taking a look back at some of the most iconic footwear styles, why not check out our blog post on the world’s most expensive jackets too?

Written by Amy Jackson - 6th December 2020

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