Aimé Leon Dore is perhaps better known to fans for its New Balance sneakers than its clothing collections — no surprise, really, as people tend to have bigger reactions to footwear than finery. But one must wonder if ALD’s purported New Balance 1906r collaboration will challenge that demand.
Revealed by sneaker leakers long before either Aimé Leon Dore or New Balance confirmed the shoe’s existence, the rumored ALD x New Balance 1906 looks particularly elderly with an upper comprising slim panels of suede and rubber atop breathable mesh, taking the already retro 1906r in the direction of vintage walking shoes.
Compared to the attractive suede iterations that most New Balance collaborators envisioned, Aimé Leon Dore’s 1906 has more in common with the charmingly clunky inclinations of Japanese NB partners like COMME des GARÇONS and Auralee, which tend to strip back the 1906’s upper to its barest form.
What results is a sneaker almost unrecognizable as an Aimé Leon Dore design, hearkening back to the throwback ways of ALD’s early New Balance collaborations. Even then, though, the ALD x NB 1906 is a surprisingly technical proposition.
That’s all hinging on the sneaker actually being legit, of course, and not the figment of some first-looker’s imagination.
There’s a throughline, too, between the Aimé Leon Dore 1906 and the ALD 860, first seen when when ALD unveiled its Spring/Summer 2023 collection and notably sharing a high-spec appearance.
No release date for either shoe yet, of course, but given the frequency of these shoes first showing up on dodgy social media accounts and then dropping online in due time, not hard to believe that there’s some substance here.
Same goes for ALD’s covetable suede NB 550, which also has yet to become anything more than myth, for now.