The Fruits of “Sole” Searching: Saucony Serves Up Brunch Inspired Footwear
Anyone vaguely familiar with their fruits and vegetables knows the finicky nature of the avocado. One of the world’s most delicious foods, the avocado is essentially the only fruit in nature that contains heart-healthy saturated fats. However, despite the avocado’s nutritious benefits, it is a pernickety fruit. Avocados have a very short shelf-life. Even the hardest and most freshly, picked avocados are rendered brown and inedible, lumps of mush to even the most die-hard foodies within a matter of days.
The avocado’s density of nutrients and short-lived palatability are traits somewhat synonymous with Saucony Originals lifestyle arm, so the announcement of an avocado-toast themed Shadow 6000 was apropos and seemingly inevitable. Saucony’s lifestyle arm has been relatively subdued over the past several years. Overshadowed by other running-lifestyle brands like Asics and city-sibling, New Balance, Saucony has had no shortage for inspiration and rich-story telling in their releases but has struggled to create a lasting mainstream relevance. More specifically, quality control for Saucony Originals has been problematic, even for their most coveted footwear releases.
But despite their previous short-comings, for 2019 Saucony is attempting to turn over a new leaf. Turning to smaller influencers with a previous affinity for the brand, Saucony reached out and investigated their following at the ground level. This level of “sole-searching” and market-research at the ground level looks to have yielded 2019’s first solid release.
Not a novice to food-inspired footwear, Saucony has dropped shrimp scampi, ramen, lobster, pumpkin spice, and Belgian waffle-based sneakers. Avocado-toast wasn’t too far a leap for the brand to take with this release and unsurprisingly, with their care and dedication successfully hit the mark. The Avocado toast Shadow 6000 is a creative blend of texture, color, and material. The lower portion of the 6000 boasts a mix of smooth brown leather and semi-soft matching suede which make-up the toast portion of the shoe. The upper portion of the shoe vaunts in its own mixture of be-speckled suede and smooth leather, both unmissable in their eye-catching avocado green. The sneakers inner lining is adorned in green cloth accented by “red pepper flake” spots. Both the tongue and inner footbed share avocado logos for which the Saucony logo comprises the pit while the back of each shoe features “Saucamole” embossed in green. The sneakers are “plated” on a grey and white sole and midsole. Packaging is spot on with an avocado “crate-like” box and comes with two sets of laces; a solid green flat pair with metal aglets and a green/red pepper flake set of rope laces with metal aglets.
Having purchased other general release Shadow 6000’s, expectations for this pair were low. However, Saucony appears to be on their A-game with this pair. Materials weren’t the highest quality but offered consistent color and shape throughout the panels and stitching was evenly placed all over the shoe. No portion of the shoe came misshapen or discolored and unlike previously released Shadow models, no glue stains and no crumpled box. Saucony’s creativity is blatantly evident in most of their releases, and their ability to draw from foods and other everyday items for their general releases is unmatched.
With Nike on an unstoppable run, flooding the market with meaningless Air Max variants and colorways, Saucony’s releases are refreshing and necessary. With the avocado toast release we see the best that the Boston brand has to offer. The question is how long will Saucony Originals releases stay fresh and ripe? Or will this quality release remain the sole edible Haas in a bowl of over-ripened fruit?
Written by: David Blackmon