Fans queuing for days for Kanye West's Yeezy shoes

By Nicole Barrett

Auckland sneaker fans have been queuing to get their hands on a pair of rapper Kanye West's latest sneakers - six days before they go on sale.

On Saturday, the coveted $490 adidas Yeezy Boost 750s will launch in New Zealand - along with the rest of the world - with just 30 pairs up for grabs.

Twelve people have set up camp outside High St shoe store Loaded in the hopes of getting their hands on a pair of the sought-after sneakers, which have glow-in-the-dark soles.

"It's a like a subculture, a shoe collecting subculture," said Loaded manager Luke Parkinson.

He said the store was preparing for a crowd of more than 300 to arrive on Saturday morning.

"A lot of people can't get their head around it. But it's supply and demand, and the shoes are what people want."

Mr Parkinson said the store had shoppers lining up on Saturday, but he sent them away telling them they would "die in the cold".

The sneaker fanatics were back with camping chairs and sleeping bags at 6am on Monday.

Joshua, the owner of High St store Prosper, who would not provide his last name, had been in the queue since Tuesday morning.

He said he was happy to fork out for a pair of the sneakers, as he wants to "stay on top" of fashion.

"When I get them I'll put them in my house and worship them. They're special shoes, I don't want to damage them," he said.

Royce, a project manager, said the queue could get awkward when "people don't know who was there first".

It was often decided with a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors.

Riki, 17, said he didn't mind missing school if it meant he could score a pair of the new Yeezys.

"It's the hype that makes them special, if you're not first you'll miss out on the chance to get them at all."

The student said he was planning on donning the sneakers at his high school's pre-ball this month.

When West's last design, the Yeezy Boost 350 sneakers were released in Auckland in August last year, eight young men camped outside Loaded for more than 80 hours to buy the $300 limited edition kicks. There were only 33 available.

Mr Parkinson said store staff asked buyers their shoe size before they purchased the shoes to make sure they didn't buy sneakers that didn't fit them, just so they could sell for a profit online.

Staff at Loaded are raffling off tickets to win one of the New Zealand pairs of Yeezys in aid of Newmarket store manger Ben and his wife Anne, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.

The couple had a 1-year-old daughter and are heading to a clinic in Mexico this Friday hoping to find other treatment.

A Givealittle page had raised more than $11,000 so far for the couple.

Ben Bay and Anne Bay. Anne has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Loaded shoe store in Newmarket, managed by Ben, is auctioning off several pairs of Adidas Yeezy boots to raise money. Photo / Supplied
Ben Bay and Anne Bay. Anne has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Loaded shoe store in Newmarket, managed by Ben, is auctioning off several pairs of Adidas Yeezy boots to raise money. Photo / Supplied

- NZ Herald

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