The Art of Shoe Trading:
There are several thousand groups on Facebook aimed at assisting people in trading and buying kicks. I’m a member of several and often find myself answering many questions concerning trades. I won’t lie, I trade a lot of kicks, if anyone has ever followed my Instagram, they know my rotation of sneakers is constantly updating. In my opinion, it’s a great way to keep your collection fresh and exciting.
The following (in a three part series) is a few rules to sneaker trading:
1. The DS vs VNDS debate: I’m not a huge fan of trading a deadstock shoe for a VNDS, because let’s face it, the advantage usually lies in the hands of the DS owner. Most people prefer purchasing a DS shoe, making that shoe more marketable and appealing to a greater audience (plus nobody’s stinky feet have been in them). DS shoes are in a different tier to VNDS and worn shoes, simply for the fact they are pristine, and collectable. The resale options are more varied and thus, more transferable into cash. In my opinion, always try and SELL your DS shoes, and trade your VNDS ones.
2. Watch the ratings: Have you ever seen a shoe listed at 5/10 or 7/10? Why is every shoe posted online an 8.8/10 and above. It’s simple… nobody would even look at a 7/10 shoe. Everyone lies and says its 9/10 and above. My fav term is Pass as DS, which is almost like saying “almost a virgin”. It may look brand new, but I can assure you it isn’t. We need to establish a clear grading system. I will write an article on my potential shoe grading scale next week. The best thing to do when trading sneakers is ask for 8-9 pictures. I suggest, top of the toe box, heels, both sides, the box, overhead view, insole pic and Id tags, this ensure you have a good idea of what you are potentially receiving.
3. The 2 for 1 debate: Many people with real heat (Tier 0 and Tier 1) are often asked for 2 for 1 trades. Now the value may be there (Two GR Jordans for your Big Bang 9s), however I believe this is the biggest sin in the sneaker game. It is so much easier to find some shoes than others. The premium you need to assess the shoe is often not reflected in the price I would always assume a 20 – 30% increase in your shoe value if you decide to trade for multiple pairs. For example, trading your Space Jams (valued around 400) for a pair of Jordan 3 Fire red (230) and Jordan 8 Playoffs (230), is still not worth it (as I would bump the value of the space jams up to 480 – 500 in this event). The likelihood of coming across Space Jams is far more difficult than those two shoes, you should be compensated accordingly.
This will continue on Friday with Items 4 – 7.
(photo of MTL Sneaker Award trading market)
Pictures by A. Wilton