The European trainer scene

High fashion originates in mainland Europe; Paris, Milan, Barcelona, these are the cities that define the scene. That isn’t, of course, to say as a result of this, the streetwear scene suffers. Quite the opposite in fact and European Sneakerheads are some of the most fanatical in the world. Visually very different from those across the pond, the European trainer fan is heavily influenced by high fashion, and designer brands combined with a whole host of streetwear brands native to the continent.

When you think of the European fashion scene you immediately think of Paris Fashion Week. Designer sportswear from labels like Ellesse, Lacoste Fila and Sergio Tacchini and as many subcultures as there are European countries. Although of course in recent years undoubtedly the differences between European Sneakerheads and those in America have begun to be less defined. With the likes of Yeezy and Air Jordan boasting worldwide fanbases, and even Virgil Ablohs Off-White finding a home in Milan. When it comes to the histories of the cultures, however, they are very much separate entities.

Europe’s growing influence on the trainer game

Notably, in the past few years more and more brands have begun to attempt appealing to the European sneakerheads. Air Jordan for example whom influence resides primarily in North America have started sowing seeds in mainland Europe. First through a high profile partnership with Paris Saint Germain football club, and furthermore through collaborations with the likes of Dutch streetwear brand Patta. This is just one example, but this pattern has been repeated in sorts by all the major trainer brands in the industry. Looking to connect more directly with the European market.

Patta is one of the European streetwear brands that are key to this. Representing everything the scene is about. Blending influences from skateboarding and Hip Hop from the 90s and early 2000s Patta as a brand accurately mirror that of a European Sneakerhead. With a style that is significantly urban, clearly influenced by skate culture and Hip Hop music. As well as Patta, brands like Parra also from Holland similarly have been collaborating with the likes of Nike and Adidas more and more in recent years.

European stores have also begun to be recognised for their importance to the wider trainer world. With iconic spots like Sweden’s own Sneakersnstuff notably dropping collaborations with some big names in the trainer game like Reebok. As well as most recently with Nike on the 20th anniversary of their Nike Air Tailwind.

Spotting European Sneakerheads

When it comes to the attire of European Sneakerheads, they aren’t as flashy as their Chinese namesakes. Nor are they as defined as an American. European sneakerheads are subtle, some would even say understated aesthetically. Designer footwear is much more prominent in Europe with the likes of Gucci, Alexander McQueen and Versace all herding substantial followings in Europe. So when it comes to streetwear branded trainers more often than not outside of the Yeezy brand, they like to keep it classic. Leaning on iconic silhouettes, like the Air Force 1, the Adidas Stan Smith or the Air Jordan 1. To supplement a wardrobe filled with Moschino, Palm Angels and Stone Island.

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