Earlier this year, Casablanca’s runway show was once again used to unveil a fresh New Balance silhouette. The XC-72 is similar to last year’s 327, another heavily textured sneaker with a “twisted ‘70s” look first showcased by the Parisian brand. And while we’re still waiting on Casablanca’s version of the XC-72 to drop, the sneaker will finally make its retail debut without the help of collaboration.
The initial XC-72 is slated to release in an assortment of faded pastels, leaving room for the sneaker’s varying textures to stand out. On a raised toe reminiscent of climbing shoes, octopus-like cups form one side of the extended outsole while the other is defined by a more jagged texture. The heel stabilizer also utilizes striped rubber with slight waves and in “gum,” a color beloved for its use on outsoles.
Both the 327 and XC-72 were designed by Charlotte Lee, whose brand-new sneakers with hints of the past have been an essential part of New Balance’s comeback. Her octopus-like outsole that extends up the sneaker is a defining feature of both models and a function of weirdness that we love to see in the game.
Split personalities — In addition to the distinct textured rubber on each side of the shoe, the XC-72 also splits its colors straight down the middle. This wasn’t the case for the Casablanca version that’s still yet to be released, but asymmetry has become more common in sneakers this year.
The initial version of the sneaker is slated to release Fall, and we we can likely expect many more variants for the XC-72 to follow. Its low $130 price tag is another great selling point, and we could easily see it becoming one of the more popular silhouettes for the rest of the year. Once the Casablanca version drops, we’ll know the XC-72 has truly arrived — but there’s no reason to wait when the in-house version hits stores so soon.