If you’ve got a soft spot for a killer collaboration or an ultra-luxe fabrication, you’re in luck! Because we’ve rounded up the best premium sneakers that come in at below-premium prices, so you can enjoy that fresh sneaker feeling without wincing at the price. With sacai x Nike’s Navy LDWaffle, Yoon Ahn’s navy AMBUSH x Nike Dunk and Patta x Nike’s Air Max 1 all included in this definitive list, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
At the tail end of 2021, Patta and Nike shook things up by releasing the Patta x Nike Air Max 1 capsule collection. Made up of three colourways, with a black and white iteration rumoured to follow soon, the Patta AM1 Blue was one of the collection’s fan favourites. Crafted from nubuck leather with a wavy pattern framing the midsole, this sneaker nods to the expected resurgence of the Nike Air Max 1 in 2022. More affordable than you might think, this sneaker is a non-negotiable must-have for any collector.
One of the Swoosh brand’s most in-demand collaborations, sacai has introduced its signature abstract detailing to the LDWaffle yet again; but this time, Fragment Design is getting in on the action. A luxe sneaker crafted from supple suede, leather and mesh, Nike’s Swoosh comes layered on the sidewalls and the “shelf” midsole is now instantly recognisable as sacai’s signature.
The adidas Yeezy silhouette that never fails to deliver, the Yeezy Boost 350 V2 always hits the mark, whatever the colourway. This year’s standout hue from Chicago-born rapper Ye – previously known as Kanye West – is the Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Oat. Crafted with a flexible knitted upper that’s patterned with multi-coloured waves, the Boost midsole steals the show, offering unbeatable comfort and support.
A collaboration for the history books, the AMBUSH x Nike Dunk High Blue is the brainchild of Yoon Ahn – the founder of AMBUSH and the Director of Men’s Jewellery for Dior. Inspired by Japanese motorbikes, the 3D Swoosh on this pair represents the tailpipes on the bikes, instantly stealing the show at first glance. Landing alongside a black and white pair, a neon yellow option and a top-to-bottom pink Dunk, this royal blue Nike Dunk High is definitely one of the more wearable to come out of the AMBUSH capsule.
A collaboration that slipped under the radar this year, the G-Dragon Peaceminusone x Nike Air Force 1 takes Nike’s most iconic silhouette and adds modern detailing to elevate it to premium status. Up top, thick rope-like laces add a chunky look, marks on the midsole give an already-worn vibe and a flower embroidered onto the tongue perfectly rounds off the design.