One of the most important albums ever to release was the GZA’s Liquid Swords. The album continued to open my eyes to alternative methods of living. While Poor Righteous Teachers delivered me my first doctrine and led me into questioning what I’d been taught, my transformation was complete when I heard B.I.B.L.E. The final track on Liquid Swords. What does this have to do with the sneakers and kicks on my site? Simplicity. Dropping knowledge or wisdom is free. I run this website and while I do look at ad revenue and affiliate revenue, I basically write all of this information without pay. When something becomes simpler or less detailed, the natural thought is that it should become cheaper and less expensive. If I can build with words and become wiser this doesn’t cost a thing. Ultimately “building” enables a person to accomplish many things. In this case simple becomes more valuable than anything. In other words, maybe the sneaker companies have a point in increasing the price for simpler products. Right. I’m going to show you pictures of an ARCH shoe being made.
When a shoe has multilayers, it has to be traced and sewn to sections. Basically it’s the process of creating a pattern. It takes several workers to actually make the process simpler and more cohesive. There is a person who draws the lines on the shoe to make sure the design is correct. There is a person who attaches the tongue of the shoe. When you make it to the last and placing the sole on the shoe, you may have about 10-15 people who have touched that pair. So when Nike makes an Air Max, or adidas makes an EQT, it takes a lot more labor than it takes to make an adidas NMD or Yeezy. It takes a lot more work than it does to create the Nike Flyknit Racer.
Yet both the adidas model and Nike models are only made of the material to the left. One machine can weave the material created for this shoe. The pattern and shape can be cut by one person after and then the shoe only requires one stitch to make the shoe fit the last. (The last is the green thing inside of the shoe above that gives us the size and width of the shoe and allows us to place the outsole onto the shoe. Simpler should require a cheaper pricepoint since there are fewer people who are actually touching the shoe, but the reality is the Nike Roshe Run is the only shoe that has reflected a decrease in cost. The 75.00 pricepoint that the shoe began at was exactly where the price should be. Because the Flyknit and Primeknit are considered premium woven fabrics the price of the shoe reflects this. Here is the average cost of Athletic Mesh: 4.00 Here is the cost of premium woven fabric: 7.98
Often, I get into discussions on shoe design and why Yeezy or PK or Flyknit shoes cost a lot more with less machining and actual work being done on the shoe. When you look at the cost of premium woven fabric it is twice the amount of athletic mesh. So it looks as if the price being doubled makes sense right? Wrong. When you add suede into the cost of a shoe the price of a shoe like an Air Max or my shoe for instance goes to 6.98 for suede per yard. All of the prices are per yard. When you consider that it takes less than a two yards to produce the upper of any running styled shoe, especially when that shoe is being woven on a machine and die cut, you literally get a 14 dollar shoe before the addition of the tongue and outsole. A retro suede runner costs almost the exact same price as a Knit/woven shoe. Especially when you get down to the amount of work it takes to make each style.
No 5% science to be dropped here. The Yeezy, PK NMD, Flyknit Racer are all priced above the price of the Roshe, but you pay more for what reason?It’s simple, because you want to. Let that soak in for a minute.