We all know that style moves like a pendulum. When things get too futuristic, you can be sure that a return to retro style is on its way. Likewise, when we’ve all seen too much of the past, there’s a futuristic revamp on the horizon. That applies to the world of sneakers, too. After much deliberation around technical runners in recent seasons, we’re in the midst of a vintage revival now revolving around '70s sneakers.
In keeping with what we're seeing in fashion, the world of sneakers is heading back in time to the era of flared trousers leading to lightweight, no-fuss runners. This journey back to '70s sneakers comes in both the sense of silhouettes and aesthetics — a yellowed sole unit, washed-out color palettes — to round out the effect.
So, from sneakers that actually originate in the era to modern adaptations and homages to the time, here are 9 of the best '70s sneakers that we found at Stadium Goods.
Shop our favorite '70s sneakers below.
Nike x Undercover Daybreak
Nike’s Daybreak first hit shelves in 1979 and it’s barely changed since. Why would it? It’s pretty perfect. The biggest alteration it’s seen came at the hands of Jun Takahashi’s Undercover which added a jagged addition to the heel to completely update the design.
Nike x Sacai LDWaffle
Another of Nike’s top '70s silhouettes got a futuristic reup recently. Sacai breathed new life into the Waffle Racer with a typically mind-boggling design. The seeing-double effect put the lightweight sneaker back in the spotlight when it released in Spring 2019.
Nike x Sacai Blazer Low
Originating on the hardwood, the Nike Blazer was a go-to for NBA players in the '70s. Chitose Abe continued her '70s revivals by reworking the Blazer almost beyond recognition. The past meets the future.
A lot of the time, all you really need is a gum sole to make a silhouette look retro. The adidas Samba, though, is no pretender. It originally released in 1949, but the versatile runner hit its stride in burgeoning subcultures during the '70s.
Nike Killshot 2
There goes that gum sole again. This time it’s the foundation to one of Nike’s most minimal kicks. The Nike Killshot 2 hit shelves in 1979 and this understated colorway shows that Nike knows this silhouette doesn’t need any changing.
adidas Originals Gazelle
While several of the shoes in today’s roundup arrived a little late to the '70s sneakers party, the adidas Gazelle arrived early to get set up before things kicked off. Released in 1968, this silhouette has earned a place in the footwear hall of fame.
Nike Waffle Trainer 2
If you’re into the lightweight nylon uppers but aren’t looking for a double-stacked sole and Swoosh, bypass the Sacai collab for the original Nike Waffle Trainer. We’re loving touches like the unfinished foam tongue and retro Swoosh tongue label to give this pair authentic '70s style.
Converse x Off-White™ Chuck Taylor 70
Virgil Abloh has an experienced hand when it comes to updating classic silhouettes. While many of his 'The Ten' designs found their feet in the '90s, the Chuck Taylor 70 is a child of the '70s.
New Balance 327
It only dates back to 2020, but the New Balance 327 has been a leader in the '70s sneakers charge. The slim silhouette and off-white sole unit are typical of the era and this collaboration with Casablanca only adds to the cause.
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