Sole Superior: The Man Behind The Scenes

Heat on the streets is real, and on the rise this month.

And we don’t mean it just literally, but especially in the days leading up to the DOPEST party of the year, Sole Superior 2017.

Having brought together over 10,000 attendees from the past 4 editions, you would be amazed to know that Singapore’s premier sneaker and streetwear convention has always been organized by a two men team.

Blown away, huh?

We are certainly intrigued, so we took it upon ourselves to dig deeper and cop first-hand intel.

Here, we give you the low-down on Sole Superior’s co-mastermind, Dexter Tan.

Teacher by day and sneaker lover by night, Dexter Tan is perhaps most famously known in the sneaker scene as the co-organizer of Sole Superior, an event for sneakerheads, by sneakerheads.

So how did Sole Superior come about? It all started when Dexter and co-organizer Jonathan Fong had a chat about the lack of a sneaker convention in Singapore, and the need to have one, all while waiting in line for a sneaker release.

After many discussions over drinks and of course sneaker campouts, the duo, who by then had become fast friends decided to “throw caution into the wind" and take up the task of organizing their own.

And that, was how Sole Superior was born.

Fast forward to 2017, Sole Superior is in its fifth edition, yet it is an occasion of many firsts.

For starters, Sole Superior will be showcasing its debut collabs with leading global streetwear brands Novesta, XLARGE and New Era, alongside a new capsule collection by highly coveted label, PRAS the Bandit.

Besides the usual brands like Converse, Jason Markk, Limited Edt and Seek, attendees can look forward to the relaunch of cult brand PONY as well as the debut of vendors such as XLARGE, Freshly Pressed Socks and Audio Technica.

In the quest for even more diversity, attendees get to discover several new promising labels as well and have the first dibs on next gen kicks.

Getting this far with Sole Superior was definitely no walk in the park, and certainly not getting any easier. Despite having done this for 4 years, many marketing managers still questioned if Sole Superior was worth participating in.

“The toughest challenge is actually getting people to believe in the event and what it entails, especially the brands.”

Being the persistent advocate, Dexter mused:

“Where else can you get up close and personal with 4000 avid streetwear consumers?”

It was really the unwavering support of attendees and the sneaker and streetwear community that spurred Dexter and Jonathan on to keep going, and push themselves harder each time to provide "a damn good experience for every single attendee."

And streetwear culture is not going anywhere, anytime soon.

Being an insider and veteran of the scene himself, Dexter observed that there’s a sudden surge of new sneakerheads entering the scene, who are younger and more trend savvy.

There’s also growth in other aspects of the scene, including the resale market, as well as street photography of which he is an absolute fan of.

Although what got Dexter into the sneaker game was Basketball and Hip Hop, what made him love it so much was the community spirit it created.

“I got to meet so many cool people through sneaker collecting, many of which have since become my friends as well.”

Image: Photoshoot of Dexter with the QSA crew

And this sentiment continues in his approach to grails.

“I think with age, I no longer have an ultimate grail... I would rather have good experiences in the sneaker game as opposed to getting a grail.”

With 180 pairs in his sneaker vault currently, he has been trying to downsize the collection (any takers?), but there is this one pair that he simply doesn’t have the heart to throw out.

“It was the first pair of limited edition sneakers my parents bought me, a pair of Nike Terminator Lows from Nike’s Be True to Your School collection.”

At that time, he still fondly recalls walking into Leftfoot at Far East Plaza to look for a pair of sneakers.

“And boom! There they were. I picked the Syracuse colourway because it matched my college house colours exactly. I wore them every single day and eventually trashed them to oblivion.”

But since then, he has bought them many times over and now he is down to his last pair which he keeps with care in a nice box.

While Dexter has a wide variety of kicks, his other fashion staple would be a nicely cut, good quality plain tee.

“Having a quality basic tee is a must have for me. I swear by Alstyle and H&M (only one particular model of tee from them though).”

Expect to see Dexter in a plain tee and jeans, and a pair of heat kicks running about Sole Superior.

Show some love and get your tickets for Sole Superior 2017 today.

See you there!


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