Upon its release in the late 1960s, the adidas Gazelle was a revolutionary training shoe and it’s been in continuous production ever since. The inspiration for the name Gazelle is much debated as some believe it was inspired by the U.S. sprinter Wilma Rudolph who was known as the “Black Gazelle”, however, Rudolph retired from professional sprinting in 1962. During this period of time adidas also released several training shoes named after fast animals such as the “Panther “ and “Jaguar” but none of these shoes stood the test of time like the Gazelle.
The Gazelle was the first adidas shoe to be made of suede, which was revolutionary at the time, as suede is a more supple fabric than leather it made the Gazelle an extremely comfortable and lightweight training shoe. The Gazelle originally came in two colourways red and blue, with the colour of the shoe denoting its performance. The Gazelles red sole was designed for outdoor use, while the Gazelles blue sole was more suitable for indoor use.
By the '70s the Gazelle was one of the most popular adidas shoes, the shoe was updated to include performance features like a heel tab to protect the Achilles heel, but by the late '70s, the popularity of the Gazelle as a training shoe had begun to fizzle out.
During the ‘80s the Gazelle gained popularity in terrace fashion, it was an extremely popular fashion shoe for young Brits. With the Gazelle being affordable and easy to get hold of it became a style staple of a football fan's wardrobe.
Other colour variations of the Gazelle did not exist until 1985 when the Gazelle Green was released, during the early ‘90s Gazelles came in lots of different colourways. During the ‘90s Gazelles became iconic having been worn by; Kate Moss, Oasis, Blur, Bob Marley and the Beastie Boys. Gazelles became a must-have for Brit Pop fans, Noel Gallagher even collaborated with adidas to make a limited edition Gazelle!
Today there are few variations of the Gazelle, the two main styles are the Gazelle (sometimes known as the Gazelle 2) and the Gazelle OG, while they may look similar there are some differences.
Branding - The Gazelle OG’s branding is similar to the original shoe, the tongue is heavily branded, while the tongue on the Gazelle is slightly longer and only features the trefoil logo. The side of the OG always has the gold lettering while the Gazelle can have either white or gold lettering. Finally, the heel tab on the OG is plain whilst the Gazelles heel tab features the trefoil.
Shape - The OG has slimmer soles and is a more pointed sleeker shoe, while the Gazelle is less pointed with thicker soles and a more modern take on the classic shoe. Whatever the style the Gazelle is a retro classic.
You may prefer your Gazelles to have more of a worn look, but if you prefer more of a box-fresh look here’s how to keep your Gazelles clean.
Don’t machine wash - As many Gazelles are made of suede, machine washing them could cause them to discolour or ruin the fabric. Damage from machine washing can cause permanent damage to Gazelles so it’s best to avoid.
Knock off the dirt - Knocking the soles of the shoes together should get most of the dirt off if there’s still some stubborn a toothbrush should do the trick.
Wash Gently - A drop of mild laundry soap and warm water should do the trick to remove any stains, just take a cloth and gently wipe away the stain.
Air dry - Leave your Gazelles to air dry at room temperature.
Check the laces & insoles - If your laces are looking a bit worse for wear they can be washed using the soap and water mix. If your insoles are smelling you can remove them and leave them to air out.
General Cleaning - Cleaning a stain as soon as possible will make it easier to remove.
Storage - Storing your Gazelles in their box will help to prevent any fading.
Be sure to check out our range of shoe care products if you want to keep your Gazelles looking fresh.
You can shop the Gazelle and other retro adidas Originals styles at a great price here at MandM Direct!
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