Much like jeans, army jackets, and trench coats, sneakers started out occupying a very specific sartorial window and have since become part of common currency. Once reserved for tennis, croquet, and basketball, they’re now seen on couture runways, in boardrooms, and — thanks to Wendy Davis— even on the floor of the Texas State Senate. (When filibustering, arch support is key to endurance.)
Athletes have served as namesakes for countless sneaker styles, many of which we still wear today — think Stan Smiths or Jordans. Sneakers have been a boon to commuting working women, lit up the feet of trendy ‘80s teens, and been transformed into pants, thanks to the genius that is Willow Smith. Click through the slideshow to see some of our favorite sneaker moments in history — from sports to pop culture to politics.