Stilettos aren’t the only kind of footwear enjoying a cult following. An increasing number guys —and girls —are developing a sneaker fetish that rivals anything Carrie Bradshaw ever had for Manolo Blahniks. The diehards are officially called “sneakerheads” and they are shelling out anywhere from $250 to well over $1000 for specialty kicks like classic Air Jordans or the brand new (and already sold-out) Air Yeezy’s, designed by Kanye West for Nike. Sneakerheads are a clean bunch and refuse to walk through grass or dirt to preserve the pristineness of their sneaks.
Proof that this phenomenon is reaching a fever pitch? Sneaker Pimps, an international convention which was launched in 2003 by Australian skater Peter Fahey, had only 200 attendees its first year. Earlier this month, the sixth annual Sneaker Pimps convention was held in Atlanta and guests were in the thousands. Outkast artist Big Boi, a self-confessed sneaker-holic, was in attendance and said, “You can really tell a lot about a person through the shoes, so I always like to keep me a fresh pair.” We know the feeling. [CNN]