The well-known adage goes that the shoes make the man. If there’s any truth to that idea, the sneakers that the following stores stock make very good men indeed. Here’s our round-up of the best sneaker stores in Melbourne. Whether new or well-established, each of them stocks the highest quality kicks to suit a wide range of preferences.
Since 2010 Up There has offered a progressive and sophisticated mix of sneaker and streetwear brands like Hender Scheme, New Balance, Norse Projects, Tantum Los Angeles, Adidas and Converse. Now, they have three stores — McKillop Street, Little Collins Street, and Coventry Street — across Melbourne. Their no-fuss approach to menswear is perhaps best symbolized by the shop’s aesthetic: exposed brick or white walls and steel clothes racks that look like they were plucked from a construction site.
Culture Kings is perhaps Australia’s best destination for sneakers and streetwear, stocking an absolutely enormous array of trainers from brands like Nike, Adidas, Puma, Gravis, Reebok, Vans and New Era. They also carry serious cultural cool points for being the store of choice for visiting musical heavyweights, with past customers including A$AP Rocky, Snoop Dogg, Tyga, and Tyler, the Creator. Culture Kings is also home to an excellent barbershop that’s looked after Big Sean, Tyga and Fabolous.
The optimistically titled Sure Store is a great destination for those looking for a classic trainers and streetwear. Just a stone’s throw from Town Hall, it stocks well-known brands like Adidas, Reebok, Vans, Stussy and New Balance, plus excitingly Tyler, The Creator’s brightly hued Golfwang brand, footwear maintenance products by Jason Markk, and the world’s best sneaker zine Sneaker Freaker. Follow them on instagram (@thesurestore) for news on what’s in stock. Melbourne CBD
Concrete Jungle calls itself ‘your neighbourhood sneaker store,’ and it’s this approachability that defines the Sydney Road space. There’s key styles from all the brands you know and love — Le Coq Sportif, Converse, Adidas Originals, Saucony and Vans — mixed in with a few more collectible pieces, like the Saucony x ShoeGallery Locals Only Grid 9000 style of which only 29 pairs were made. Plus, Australian brands like Melbourne’s own makers of fine kicks Rollie Nation are also available. Brunswick
The future is bright as far as Doomsday Store is concerned. While opening new physical stores has been a bit of a risk after the ecommerce boom, Doomsday believes that walk-in stores still serve an important purpose in local culture. So, in addition to stocking well-known sneaker brands, they hold local artist exhibitions and book launches, and try to support exciting new labels like A.Four and Stray Rats, as well as independent zines like The New Order and Zug Magazine. Fitzroy
The first thing you’ll notice when you walk into Prime on Little Collins Street is a wall-full of sneakers from Fred Perry, Onitsuka Tiger, Nike, Asics, Adidas and the like. With such a decent display, you’ll be hard pressed not to just throw your wallet at them. The store celebrates its 20th birthday next year, having opened its first store on Barkly Street in St. Kilda in 1997. Since then, they’ve also opened a space on Brunswick Street in Fitzroy, as proof that their choice of timeless, high-quality streetwear and sneakers is perennially in demand.
Another location for menswear essentials, Capsule Store on Lonsdale Street is home to a tight edit of shoes, from Redwing leather boots and Oxford shoes to Nike Air Maxs and Adidas Superstars. Menswear lovers may also like to check out their ‘Stylistics’ blog on the Capsule website, which provides inspiration in the form of street style photos of Sydney locals wearing the sneakers and garments currently in stock. Melbourne CBD