If you’re stuck at home right now, with nothing to do, your beloved sneaker fix doesn’t have to suffer. There are plenty of ways to still fuel your love of sneakers. A good place to start would be to clean your rotation, and arrange them into an elaborate storage system. Then, if you really immerse yourself in that organisational mood, this can also be a great time to take stock and finally catalogue your collection.
Why Catalogue Your Collection?
If you’ve gone to the trouble of neatly storing your dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of sneakers, you might as well keep track of what you actually own. Unless you like the surprise of rediscovering forgotten pairs. And, even if your sneaker storage is a shambles, you’ll have to eventually sort it out. Again, may as well catalogue your stash at the same time.
Insurance is also another good reason to catalogue what you own. Generally, you insure your car, home and health – so why not your sneakers too? Some providers cover sneakers under general home and contents insurance policies, while others specialise in luxury goods. Knock on wood, but if your collection was to meet unfortunate circumstances, it may just be worth having your precious pairs covered. These are the steps to take to thoroughly catalogue your collection.
Group Them Together!
If you’ve already neatly stored your collection in a dedicated space, hopefully with some degree of organisation, this step is easy. If you haven’t, put all of your shoes in one place and sort everything by grouping the same brands together and, where applicable, same style. It will make the whole process a lot easier.
With all your shoes out, you may as well document them in a consistent way. Put the shoes on top of their box and your camera on a tripod if available. Then snap away from as many angles as you can find. That said, a side-on or angled shot should do the trick. Then name the photo files by brand, style, colourway or SKU, for example: nike-air-force-1-courir.jpg
Obviously, if you store your sneakers on racks or in a pile without their boxes, you can visually identify what shoes you have. Skip to the next step in this case.
But if you’re the type to store your sneakers in boxes, it might be hard to pick out a pair when staring at a wall of cardboard or semi-translucent plastic. So, label your boxes! Neatly write the shoe name or colourway on the front of the box with a Sharpie, or use some adhesive labels or Post-it Notes for extra contrast. Print out a photo of the shoes and stick them on, or use a Polaroid! Old-school cool.
As referenced in How To Downsize Your Sneaker Collection, the best way to log everything you have, is to indeed write it all down. Create columns that correlate to the file naming convention of your photos, so you can group and sort your collection by name, style, colour, or whatever other metric you want to use! Just make sure you update it when you buy, sell or trade something in your collection.
The more sneakers you own, the longer this process will take. Obviously, trying to catalogue a collection that runs into four-digit figures can be a daunting task, so break it into chunks and catalogue a brand or style at a time.
Many hands make light work, so it’s worth enlisting someone to help pull shoes or fire the camera while you set up the catalogue shot. Bonus points for including a tag or digital watermark to identify the photos as your own! It’s an old Internet forum habit…
Use the spreadsheet to decide what sneakers to sell, or to help switch up the order in which you store your collection. In the likely event you get bored and want to rearrange, you’ll be glad you have all your shoes written down.
Have fun cataloguing!