10 GREAT PLACES to BUY FRESH KICKS

In case you didn’t know, The Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 V2 is a new low-top sneaker designed by Kanye West. Next to Air Jordans they are this seasons most sought out kicks. However, designer sneakers have long been considered collectors items ranging in price from $200 – $5000, and only available at certain locations. If you don’t mind waiting in lines around the block, entering raffles or even spending the night outside sometimes,  DTLA is the perfect place to find them.

Nice Kicks Shoe Store

With over 8 million followers on social media you can bet when the latest designer sneaker is released or customized, Nice Kicks will be the first to tell you about it. Nice Kicks has an entire bulletin board devoted to Air Jordans and other top sellers on their website. Better yet, Nice Kicks just launched their new LA store located at the western entrance of the fashion district on 9th and Main. On September 25th, Nice Kicks will offer the much anticipated release of Kanye West’s Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 V2 plus tons of Yeezy Surprises, while supplies last, which won’t be long, seeing as they will most likely be completely sold out, around the world, just minutes after their official release. 862 S Main Street. (213) 542-2380.

Blends

Sneakers and sports go together like, high heels and mini skirts, with Lakers, Nike and Kobe fans leaping for a chance to purchase the lightweight Kobe XI Men’s Basketball Shoe with Flywire cables and springy cushioning. However, when limited edition sneakers come out, it’s almost impossible to meet the demand. Instead of promising there will be enough in supply for all, it’s often better to use a raffle system. Established in 2006, Blends has been making tracks ever since. Blends has other locations in Beverly Hills, Costa Mesa, Larchmont Village, San Diego, and Santa Ana but for convenience you can find them at their new location on 7th and Los Angeles. If you are one of the lucky winners of the raffle be sure to bring your photo ID, and enough money to make the purchase or Blends will blow the whistle on you and you’ll be out the game. 725 S Los Angeles St. (213) 626-6607.

The Holy Grail

The Holy Grail on Pico Blvd and Figueroa offers one of the best options for designer footgear. Holy Grail offers items on consignment, meaning you can put some or all of your designer collection up for sale at their shop, and come back later to reap the rewards. And the rewards are great, designer sneakers are collectors items – they increase in value. What may start off at $220 can easily end up priced well over a thousand dollars, in a matter of moments in the designer sneaker realm. Known as the “sneaker temple” they also offer armament of t-shirts, socks and accessories, customers will receive 80% payback if their item sells. The store keeps the remaining 20%. 604 W Pico Blvd. (213) 746-6405.

Rif

Oh HipHop has more connections to designer sneakers than it has beats. From LL’s Adidas to, Nelly’s Air Force Ones, break dancers, top 40 videos, to album covers, and even wedding photos, just aren’t dope without a designer pair and don’t forget the fat laces. With all that HipHop has given the designer sneaker industry its good to know there are outlets in downtown that focus on making a difference in the community, they humbly pride in providing outreach assistance helping the needy and the homeless, and they just happen to specialize in Nike Air Force Ones, Nike’s number one Basketball sneakers are hands down the most popular basketball shoes on the planet. So, keep rappin’ about your kicks Nelly and well keep buying them. Established in December 2006, Rif is located in-between Central and San Pedro in Little Tokyo. They specialize in selling collectibles including rare but fashionable footwear in addition to their in-house brand. This company’s philosophy is about “good people helping good people.” 332 E 2nd Street. (213) 617-0252.

Vlado Footwear

Not so much into the music scene or the sneaker fad, or collectable scene, yet still very relevant to the world of sneakers is Vlado Footwear. Established in 2003 this huge shoe warehouse, with the focus on promoting its own brand, carries sneakers for more practical uses, such as running, hiking, and family time. Members who may still find their self worth in a classroom, and not the arena are sure to find an affordable pair throughout their huge selection of vivid bright colors, designs and new textures. Vlado Footwear is the best choice for performance coupled with style and practicality. 2200 S Main St. (213) 629-2591.

Santee Alley

You won’t have to wait in line at the Santee Alley for designer kicks or pay top dollar. This shopping establishment started in 1970’s when wholesalers started opening their doors on Saturdays for business. 30 years later, The Santee Alley is known to be a cultural staple of LA. for shoppers from around the globe. Thousands gather at this outdoor and indoor shopping shanti town, to find great purchases at wholesale and discount prices. We can’t guarantee you’ll find the latest release, or that your new found kicks will be genuine, but at least you’ll leave with a pair of designer labels, glued, sued or painted on something, for less. 210 E Olympic Blvd. (213) 488-1153.

Footland Sports

Specializing in the latest trends, this hidden gem has been around since 1996. From selling Nikes, Air Jordans, Apexs, Nike socks and clothing apparel, they pride in their variety and unique style. They carry a nice selection limited special edition shoes at VERY competitive prices! Quality service equals happy and satisfied customers is their main focus. 102 Japanese Village Plaza Mall. (213) 626-0181

BURLINGTON COAT FACTORY

Alright, mom and dad, here’s a chance to look and feel younger when it comes to fashion, plus you know you’ll get the quality and service of one of America’s most beloved department stores. Not just for coats anymore, and pioneering Downtown’s Bring Back Broadway campaign, Burlington offers a tremendous assortment of designer and name-brand fashion sneakers for the whole family! They offer everything from shoes to coats, handbags, home décor, luggage and backpacks, designer fragrances and more. Burlington’s pricing is what attracts the budget conscious shopper, discounting their merchandise, including their sneakers, at up to 65%. 659 S Broadway. (213) 614-7934

KerFree100

Yup, you guessed it. It’s me Keri Freeman, publisher and concept designer for Downtown Weekly. Living, working and playing in Downtown coming from an entertainment background…I discovered something about myself. I discovered I really liked sharing my knowledge of DTLA and its awesome hospitality movement. Also in doing so I have the great pleasure of working with incredible sponsors (who believe in the vision), extraordinary literary artists, photographers, event coordinators and many talented artists and musicians who inspire me every day to keep the DTLA Weekly going. Also, it would seem I’m the only woman of color to publish a newspaper here in over 100 years, so hopefully that inspires some future generations as well….Just remember if its fun…it can’t be work….Thank you, people of Gaia, for your continued support and thank you for reading!