Earlier this year, the first pair of Nike Air Yeezys ever seen in public sold for a record-shattering $1.8 million. Kanye West debuted the sneaker at the 2008 Grammys, and as his sneaker empire has grown and shifted over to Adidas, the “game-worn” shoes are amongst the most meaningful in the history of the culture.
This week another one-of-a-kind Air Yeezy sample has surfaced, and it comes in a color scheme never before seen. A collector who goes by MCsneakers on Instagram posted images of a prototype used for wear testing prior to the Air Yeezy going on sale in 2009. As noteworthy as the off-white, pink, and blue color scheme is the lack of strap that would be seen on the end product.
According to the collector, West himself actually cut off the strap to help decide if he wanted to keep it. Signs of wear are clearly visible on the shoe, although the owner didn’t specify if it was Kanye who wore them.
Not for sale — The anonymous collector behind the Instagram account has made clear in his bio that all sneakers shown are part of his personal collection and not for sale. If the person did decide to sell his Air Yeezy sample, it’s unclear what they’d even be worth because this is the first time the general public has even seen the sneakers.
Also in MCsneakers’ collection is another pair of Air Yeezy samples that have previously been known to exist. The black prototype with a glow-in-the-dark outsole was listed for sale by Flight Club in 2017 for $100,000, but it’s unclear if the collector’s is the same exact pair. At the moment, Flight Club also has a pair of Air Yeezy 2 “Solar Red” samples on sale for more than $15,000 that are largely similar to the model that went on sale.
Of course, there’s probably someone out there who won’t be discouraged by the “not for sale” warning. And if that’s you, you might try offering a figure that can’t be refused.