The adidas Gazelle has been experiencing a sort of comeback – even though it never really went away.
A terrace culture classic, the low-top trainer has always been a part of the adidas portfolio since its introduction in 1966. It was one of the first sneakers with three stripes to be made from suede, offering a softer and lighter upper compared to traditional leather trainers.
The original Gazelle with the signature toe bumper featured a slimmer profile than the models available today, as well as internal heel tabs, woven tongue labels and gold foil branding located closer to the heel.
Available in a vibrant red or blue with white stripes at launch, the colorway indicated the model’s specification. The red colorway came with a transparent outsole for indoor gyms while the blue pair featured a lined micro-cell sole for outdoor workouts.
In 1979, the Gazelle was updated for the first time with a fully transparent gum sole for indoors and t-toe under the Spezial program and sold as a handball shoe. Later known as the Gazelle Indoor, it quickly gained traction off the pitch and was embraced by football fans and subcultures across Europe.
In 1991, adidas updated the original Gazelle again with a slightly bulkier shape to create the silhouette that we are familiar with today. It was launched alongside several popular models from the archive re-emerge with minor upgrades for comfort in plenty of new colorways.
Having always enjoyed a particular popularity in the UK, the silhouette soon became an icon of the Britpop scene. The trainer’s cult status was cemented when band members of The Stone Roses, Oasis and Blur wore Gazelle’s with blue jeans and Firebird track tops. Supermodel Kate Moss was regularly spotted with the famous T-toe trainers on her feet.
Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2016, adidas devoted a lot of attention to the Gazelle. Through major marketing efforts, including several collabs, the silhouette experienced a similar success to the return of the Stan Smith two years earlier.
This year, the Gazelle Indoor experienced a surge in popularity, fueled by TikTok, Gucci and Harry Styles – even though the model hasn’t really changed much from the original. When the fashion world and TikTok eventually move on to the next trend, the timeless silhouette is already destined for another comeback.
The adidas Gazelle Indoor is now available via solebox.com and all solebox locations.