Sydney is a city fuelled by perpetual motion. A capital of both culture and commerce, it pulses with the frenetic energy of a metropolis on the move. Perhaps that’s why we were so taken with Subtype, a relative newcomer to Sydney’s sneaker scene, and an oasis of calm hidden in the bustling city. Nestled just off George street in a network of laneways below the iconic IVY pool bar, Subtype is a destination retail space that’s as carefully considered as it is presented. The store’s directors, Jonothan Yeo and Leith Testoni, clearly drew inspiration from the art world when designing Subtype. The result is an industrially-informed, minimalist environment that amplifies the product on offer. It’s all polished concrete, exposed brick, and floating LED tube lighting – a refined environment that suits the product selection.
Offering a tightly curated roster of sneaker brands that include the usual heavy hitters, as well as Amsterdam’s Filling Pieces and Italy’s Casbia. The footwear offering is complemented by a small range of premium apparel from the likes of Misbhv, Drole de Monsieur, and Mr.Completely. The product on offer is a reflection of the tastes of the directors themselves as filtered through buyers Gerard Caradonna and Leith Testoni. ‘If the most influential brands release an average collection, you won’t see it [in] Subtype because we wouldn’t wear [it] ourselves,’ boasts a mission statement on the store’s website.
The goal of the store is elevating the local scene to that of the international fraternity.
As Gerard explains, ‘Australia’s sneaker community is tired of not having access to what Europe and America gets offered. Subtype provides a place that will get the attention of international heavyweights like Nike and adidas to realise how elevated and established the local sneaker community is, and offer Australians the access to limited releases that they’re forced to buy off shore.’ The process seems to be working, with a steady stream of Quickstrike Nike releases and exclusive Puma drops moving through the doors.
It hasn’t just been the brand’s attention that they’ve caught, though. Since opening a little over a year ago, the store has hosted A$AP Ferg, Joey Badass and Reed Space’s own Jeff Staple.
Of course, the attention isn’t just directed internationally. Subtype is committed to fostering the local scene, ‘It’s about looking inward at out our local sneaker community. Joining forces with other sneaker enthusiasts and collaborating on events and projects to elevate one another,’ Gerard expands. ‘Connection, collaboration, and elevation,’ is the mantra – and the store is putting that into practise. Recently, they collaborated with Australian producer Young Franco on a limited edition t-shirt, and they’re currently cooking up a surprise with fellow Sydney-siders Butter. What exactly that entails is yet to be revealed, but in the interim drop by the space to get your fill of premium releases in an impressive retail space.
Visit Subtype at Shop 2/3 Palings Lane next time you're in Sydney, or head to their online store to check out what they have available today.