November 22, 2016

Sneakerhead @JuiceGee takes hoarding to a whole new, and impressive, level. Having collected rare and vintage trainers since the age of 16, she’s built up an impressive collection, filling cupboards, spare rooms and shelving with her most treasured finds. The most qualified gal on the subject we know, she lent our studio some of her favourite vintage trainers to style our November womenswear shoot. We catch up with her about her buying habits, trainers that have gone unworn, some of her most memorable steals and how her obsession got started…

UO: What were the first pair of trainers that you owned?

The first pair I remember buying for myself were a pair of all leather, blue, black and white air max 90s from the Sports Direct kid’s section for £40. Prior to that, I was a converse till I die kinda person, so I remember thinking at the time, £40 is sick, because if I don’t like them after a while it doesn’t matter because they were so cheap!

UO: When did you decide to start a collection of vintage trainers and what inspired the decision?

To be honest, my ex-boyfriend at the time got me into kicks. He always had an amazing collection from the age of 16 and I specifically remember his air max 90 infrared from 05 – the infra was so bright they looked banging, so I thought hmmm let me actually investigate this whole trainer thing.

The vintage/retro side of things wasn’t on purpose; it just happened that at the time (circa 2006) girls weren’t that into kicks… so when I went hunting I was able to find some bangers for chips. It wasn’t till a couple months after I realised what the kicks were and their value.

My first ebay find was a 99p pair of Nike Air Jordan aqua 8′s, brand new in the box. I was GASSED! After that I started searching old Nike releases and it just went from there. I’ve always bee a fan of Nike pre 2006 because the quality is 10x better!

UO: What are your favourite pair(s)?

I hate this questionnnn.. I can never answer! I have too many I like (sorry for being a cop out!)

UO: What are your tips for vintage/ thrift shopping?

It’s good to know the year they were made, because anything pre 2005 tends to get soft soles, or the bubbles burst, midsole prone to cracking, or air units get cloudy etc. These are the things I check for when buying older kicks online and IRL. Look everywhere and anywhere – places you wouldn’t expect. I’ve picked up some heat from charity shops, boot sales and markets. I got some VNDS Nike Air Max 1 ‘friendly football pack’ from Brick Lane Market for a tenner!

UO: Are you a compulsive shopper or do you plan your purchases?

When it comes to kicks I’m a planner, especially now I’ve got older anyway, and now I’m lacking in storage space haha. When I started collecting I wanted everything I could get my hands on – not so much now. When it comes to clothes I’m compulsive – i have a bit of a spending problem! But in the same respect I’m all about collabs, so yeah I guess that’s planned.

UO: What is your favourite way to style a classic pair of white trainers?

My whole thing is “stay cosy” so more than likely with some kind of comfy sports luxe style trouser or a pair of joggers.. (i live in trackies) probably in an all white fit, or some kind of monochrome vibe. Baggy t-shirt, printed or mesh sock, oversized jacket – bomber or padded depending on weather and a “man-bag” that’s my general day-to-day steez. I don’t wear white trainers too tough, because they get dirty too easily and I’m a bit of a tomboy and always on the go so I like to be practical.

UO: How would you describe your personal style?

I think ‘tomboy’ pretty much sums me up – dress from the toes up, stay cozy, function over fashion. :)

UO: Where are your favourite places to shop for vintage items?

eBay, Depop, charity shops and boot sales!!

UO: Do you have any trainers that you have bought, but never worn?

Yeaaaaah guilty. Some I want to keep in boxes till the hype dies down, or just because I don’t want to wear them yet and some I get and forget I have, because it wasn’t weather appropriate to wear them at the time.

UO: What new brands/ styles are you loving right now?

I love filling pieces – it’s great to have a shoe brand that is so on board and in touch with women. Axel Arigato – a more luxury sneaker brand but really minimal and low key, simple but quality.

I also came across Myswear the other day – really cool shoe brand that have some amazing styles and they’re all customizable, they’ve got a massive variety of materials and colours for you to pick from, so that’s kinda dope!

Shop: Trainers