With the imminent arrival of Design Miami, no event could possibly be more juxtaposed than the scourge of today’s Black Friday. The former is Art Basel’s insulated annual showcase of the world’s rarest and most expensive household objects, whereas the latter represents the worst of humanity’s mass market tendencies, where beginning at 5am, people slither out of sleeping bags on gum-strewn sidewalks to shiv, shoot and trample their neighbors for $129 TV’s. While the goods presented at Design Miami are hand-crafted by bespeckled, espresso-sipping Japanese artisans in hidden ateliers tucked inside hollowed-out Alsacian tree trunks, big box Black Friday retailers rely upon Americans’ insatiable thirst for plastic. It’s, you know, a different kind of consumption.
So leave it to Atelier Louis Vuitton to worldwide debut numerous luxury must-haves during Design Miami next week, specifically designed to nipple-tweak the elite sneakerheads who magically orbit and somersault around the rarified ether of the sneaker-verse. Cue a new Drake song. And just in time for Jeff Goldblum’s new Disney+ show about sneakers.
First up is the Sneaker Trunk. Hard-sided, handmade and customizable, no two are the same, for your sneaker travel needs are unique, and your sneakers must circumnavigate the globe with freshness and unscuffed vim, sans saggy-tongued jet lag. Because your sneakers are emotionally priceless, Louis Vuitton literally won’t even reveal what the price is. That’s how special you are. When the bellman wheels the beast into your suite, he’ll have no idea what’s inside. Unfurl the latches with glee after the door slams shut. Sit Indian style on the onyx, close your eyes and sniff your collection.
But what if you want a singular box where your sneaker can sleep, like a luxurious leather-clad home? Louis Vuitton has you covered with the cleverly named Sneaker Box. It’s a very special box for a singular pair of foot candy. It has a handle for carrying down the street. At the club, it can sit in its own chair, paired with its own glass of Krug. It’s clad in LV monogrammed hide. It’s got hardware for days. Sneaker Box has a lock. You must wear the key around your neck. Your sneakers can see out just as much as you can see in, like, “Is that fly girl on the dancefloor staring at me?”
Is that glass? Too breakable, too heavy. Is that plastic? Ewww, don’t be so downmarket. Is that Perspex? What’s Perspex? Why yes, it’s only the most optically efficient, luxurious acrylic in the world. Nothing but the best.
You can buy one or 158 Sneaker Boxes. The little feet are magnetized so when you stack them in your living room, they stick together and don’t fall over. You’ll probably need taller ceilings. You’ll probably need to purchase a library ladder to wheel around the wall and ascend on a whim. How much is each Sneaker Box? Who knows? Does it matter? Your sneakers are like family, and one can’t simply put a price on blood relatives.
If your sneaker collection hasn’t started, but Sneaker Trunk and Sneaker Box have you moist, ready to stick not just a toe, but immerse both feet in holy water up to your moisturized ankles, consider starting with Louis Vuitton’s collab with artist Virgil Abloh, a talented lad from Illinois who’s created the new 408 Global Trainers. The 408’s come in 9 delicious flavors named after worldwide cities, including the blue-laced New York edition (guess: because New York votes Democrat?) and the red-laced Chicago edition (guess: because the Chicago Bulls have a red logo?)
If the Louis Vuitton sneaker website is any indication, these puppies are probably north of $1,600. They will, of course, need to be housed. Head to Design Miami to see this quadrangle of sneaker Jesus, or visit their local stores in the Design District, Coral Gables or Dadeland.
Photos: Louis Vuitton