These Are the Independent Sneaker Brands You Need to Know

Fugazi One In the Chamber

The sneaker game is hard to crack, not only for us consumers trying to cop kicks but for start-up and independent sneaker brands as well!

When you look beyond the bigger names of the sneakersphere like adidas, Nike and New Balance, there’s a whole world of eclectic independent footwear brands with wild and forward-thinking designs. Some have creative interpretations of products that already exist while others look to the future for their innovative designs.

Here are the independent sneaker brands that you need to know about!

Studio Hagel Shroud

Studio Hagel

You may be already familiar with Studio Hagel, we interviewed them back in 2018 about their out-of-this-world approach to footwear design. Founded by Mathieu Hagelaars in 2015, Studio Hagel was started as a footwear design and consultancy studio. Back then, they were known for their Instagram series called Makers Monday which saw experimental footwear created out of everything from IKEA bags to multiple different soles.

In 2022, they’re off and running with their latest venture, creating their first in-house sneaker dubbed the Shroud. Packed underneath the engulfing top layer of the shoe is a tonne of intricate details. We appreciated the design so much, we featured it in Issue 47!

Hagel is now on track to create a slew of new colourways of the shroud, including a white pair that’s arriving this June.

notwoways lacuna Onyx

notwoways

Starting in the UK in 2020, independent sneaker brand notwoways, have grown quite the following over the past two years thanks to their distinct design features and recognisable aesthetic. They craft a range of silhouette options that lean towards the chunkier end of the spectrum. Despite being only two years old, their customer base has shown to be loyal with many of their silhouettes experiencing rapid sell-out times.

Fugazi One in The Chamber

Fugazi

Hailing from Los Angeles California, Trevor Gorji’s Fugazi imprint isn’t your run of the mill brand. While focusing his talents across multiple disciplines, from apparel to accessories, Fugazi is most well known for their footwear creations. They take already-existing models and craft replica-eque depictions.

Their most recent being a sartorial portrayal of the Margiela GAT or German Army Trainer. Named the FATs, Gorji reengineered it to look like a skate shoe from the early-2000s. Beefing up the tooling and adding a sneaky stash pocket tongue. You may also be familiar with their depiction of the Air Jordan 1 which they dubbed ‘One in The Chamber’.

SCRY Lab Shadow

SCRY Lab

There's a wide selection of brands creating wildly futuristic designs and SCRY Lab is leading the charge. Founded in 2020 by Zixiong Wei, they create experimental footwear that we would expect to see worn on the feet of aliens from a distant planet. Since its beginnings, SCRY has looked to innovation and the future as a guide. Their flagship model dubbed the Shuttle is created using an involved printing process that doesn’t need an assembly line or produce any waste.

Rapidly increasing their product line over the past two years, they now feature four different silhouettes, each in two separate colourways. Their price points are high but worth every penny!

730 Footwear

730 Footwear

Asspizza AKA Austin Babbitt is a cultural icon and has made his mark on the younger generation of fashion enthusiasts by creating clothes and art. A product of social media, he came up in New York alongside individuals such as Father Steve, Luka Sabbat and Kerwin Frost. Nowadays, he's expanding his business and has just launched a sneaker brand titled 730 FOOTWEAR. The first product takes inspiration from the Nike Air More Uptempo and will debut in a black colourway. Pairs haven't released just yet but stay tuned to the 730 socials for updates.

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