C/o our editor, Jodi Taylor. In collaboration with adidas Originals.
When you spend years diving into the most glam and chic closets around the world, you can’t help but commit to memory the different design and organizational elements you come across. Not even joking, once after a trip to Brazil, I was adamant about wallpapering half of my bedroom in cheetah print. And while that element didn’t translate so well in my apartment, I have made excellent use of a few other bits that I’ve picked up along the way—so much so that I now consider myself a pro when it comes to styling out and creating a 10/10 (aka Instagrammable) sneaker closet. My own is honestly so beautiful (looking at all of my perfectly lined-up adidas Superstars practically makes my heart skip a beat) that I felt it rude to not share my five steps to achieving sneaker-closet greatness.
STEP ONE: CLEAN YOUR SNEAKERS
There is no point in putting in the effort to create a photo-worthy closet if you’re not going to at least keep your sneakers so clean that you could practically eat off them. My go-to products are Jason Markk (naturally). Start with the Shoe Cleaning Solution: Applying a dollop to a toothbrush, quickly dip the toothbrush in water and then get to work scrubbing any bits of dirt or grime off the sneakers. When dealing with a pair of sneakers like the adidas Superstar, make sure you’re extra diligent around the three stripes, where dirt can quickly become trapped. As you finish each section, use a small microfiber towel to wipe away any leftover cleaner. To finish it off, when your sneakers are gleaming, use the Jason Markk Repel Spray to lock in that cleanliness and repel any liquids or stains.
STEP TWO: SWAP OUT YOUR LACES
I like to have fun with my sneakers (and think that you guys should, too), and one of the best ways to do this is by popping in some colorful laces. Feel free to play around with materials, because laces come in many varieties, from leather to coated canvas, cotton, and metal-tipped. Note: There is a “proper” way to lace your sneakers—always go through the top of the eyelet.
STEP THREE: INVEST IN STORAGE
Clear, drop-front shoeboxes are the best out there, but I get it, not everyone has endless amounts of space in their closet—myself included. If that’s the case, feel free to do a combination of the clear boxes and a handy wall rack. That way you can protect your faves and leave the sneakers that are in your current rotation on the wall. Bonus points if you put your most eye-catching pairs on the wall—my current faves are the adidas Superstar “Metal Toe.”
STEP FOUR: PROTECT THE SHAPE OF YOUR SNEAKERS
Two words: shoe tree. Over time, sneakers will naturally lose a bit of their shape (especially in the toe area), so it’s best practice to store them with a shoe tree inside. They’re super easy to use; just slide the front bit in, and bend the coil part back until it rests inside the sneaker. To take things a step further, undo your laces and knot them together in one loose knot before popping them in the shoebox or on the wall.
STEP FIVE: CREATE A COLOR STORY
Last but certainly not least, create a color story in your closet, whether you go by the color of the actual sneakers, or you do it by lace color. You can either create a color gradient (a personal favorite of mine) or store your sneakers beside something of the same color. This is where plants, picture frames, painting, and colored walls come in super handy.