Have We Reached the Limit of Enormous Sneakers?


With the 10XL, Balenciaga and Demna push the humble dad shoe to a new extreme.

This is the news edition of Notes, where Samuel Hine covers the world’s leading fashion trends.

As my friend Rachel Tashjian once said in GQ, “At the risk of being self-indulgent, the history of fashion is really a story of how things get bigger and then they get smaller.”

He’s right. History, fun and sophistication in fashion come from this simple paradise. And we’re clearly in the middle of a recession right now.

At least that’s what I thought when I looked at Balenciaga‘s Fall 2024 preview. I was returning from Louis Vuitton’s pre-fall show in Hong Kong; Mad hero Steff Yotka captured it at Hancock Park for GQ. . It was the

in the most distinctive way I’ve ever touched in Hong Kong, when Dior Men’s announced its pre-fall show to take place in the city in the first quarter of 2024.)

Balenciaga takes over Tony Windsor Boulevard. . A nice shot of the Hollywood sign. Demna, the creative director of the brand, described the collection as a love letter to Los Angeles. So it made sense that the front row would consist of a group of casually dressed high-end fashionistas heading for Hailey Bieber. They wore headscarves, sealed cell phones, coffee mugs and Erewhon shopping bags made of leather. But as I watched the show, I wondered what I was actually seeing. The models were so gorgeous as they walked around the gym that I wondered if the video feed was created by artificial intelligence.

But the way the world sees the world is not what it cooks. The shoes are available now and you can pre-order them for $1,490. They are called 10XL and are the leading sports franchise in the state. The 42-inch chain weighs only four pounds. (Adidas Sambas size 42 are 0.75 pounds) Imagine two huge carbon cars like my dad’s sports car.

For Yotka, the post-show interview focused less on a surprise runner and more on the Erewhon collaboration, where things have taken a fundamental turn in Los Angeles. “Somehow the shoes are so big that I don’t feel very good,” he said. “I think we’re in an MSCHF world,” he said. Plus-size hasn’t been as popular since Big Red Shoes entered the new era of viral shoes—like when Balenciaga first introduced the giant sport in 2017 with the Triple-S

.But after the show, all I could think about was whether the 10XL represented the pinnacle of athleisure. Yotka claims the 10XL is more than three times the size of the Triple-S. Can shoes grow bigger? Have we reached the extremes of outward production and erosion?

I asked Luke Sabbat to arrest him. The Balenciaga superfan attended the show with another huge sportswear: Cargo, which made its debut in the 2024 10XL collection, and did not appear out of nowhere: Demna loves extreme silhouettes and has been slowly developing them for years. At the famous “Mud Show” in Paris, Demna unveiled the 3XL Extreme Tourer followed by the Cargo, which Sabbat said was “smaller” than the 10XLs.

The Average Cargoes still encountered few problems as the Sabbat made its way through the sunny streets of Los Angeles. “I didn’t know where my legs were, so I hit a lot of things,” he said. He told me that he never stood on it, but that it was difficult to walk up and down the stairs because the shoe size was larger than the width of the stairs. Sabbat did not try to pass through there. “You forget how big the shoes really are,” he said of the blinding light. But the Sabbath said they ruled. “The extraordinary 10XL is actually one of my favorites from the collection. When you think shoes can’t get any bigger, it’s like, what’s next?” It’s reviving the wearable tech trend.”

How close are we? I asked a travel expert who has experience choreographing the show to demonstrate how the models walk in 10XLs. “It works great for how wide she is,” one model with a nice bust said. But most of the models, like Olympic swimmers, had to sway their hips to keep their feet from hitting each other. “You have to change your performance,” Craftsman said. “The legs seem to compensate for that.

I can imagine how they feel wearing snowshoes. It looks like work, to be honest. Some models were being pushed up and down too much with each step and falling over as if they were going up and down on the small chair.

I sent the show photos to fashion photographers promoting the shoes. They responded with crying and laughing emojis. But they were really impressed with the 10XL’s specifications. “I’m sure it’s harder than it looks, especially on the inside,” they said. Perhaps due to manufacturing issues, the shoes are only available in three sizes. (Balenciaga says, “If your size is not available, we recommend going down one size.” I asked the designer if he could use the shoe to make shoes three times the size of regular shoes. He said they could try, but Things get bigger and smaller? Or does his partner Demna take us from now on? What does he think he’ll surprise you with? “Where are you going now that you’ve made a big shoe?” ‘So I think you can make a very small shoe,’ he replied. Something you can’t do with those little shoes. “Yotka scoffed at the idea of ​​us coming close to hugging. “I think we can always be more!” said.

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