Just like that, it’s over.
Sole DXB took over Dubai Design District this weekend for its annual convention of all things street and sneaker-related, and this year’s rendition was better than ever.
So while we prepare ourselves for next year, and the independent clothing brands retreat into the shadows until their next pop-up, here are 10 of our favourite things that happened at this year’s urban-cool event.
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1. Skepta was incredible
The crowd that Sole drew over the weekend paled in comparison to the crowd that turned up for Skepta. The UK grime artist is known for his high-energy shows, and didn’t disappoint during his Dubai debut.
2. Scottie Pippin rocked up to tip off a few games
Michael Jordan’s right-hand man, Scottie Pippen of the Chicago Bulls, came on behalf of Nike as their special guest for the Sole Ball Above All section. The basketball legend even helped to start a couple of games down on the court with a tip off.
3. We saw some new labels on the scene
From fashion brands such as Retrograde and Corcel to food options like Scoop by No 57, there were many welcome additions to this year’s Sole line-up.
4. And the old-time brands were just as hot
Iconic streetwear brand R.A.P London by Hassan Hajjaj relaunched, and the Level Shoes space was especially dazzling, with a curated offering from designer brands including Maison Margiela, Balenciaga, Rick Owens, and Axel Arigato.
A photo posted by Level Shoes (@levelshoedistrict) on
5. Stormzy arrived as Adidas’ special guest
The young up-and-coming grime artist was announced last minute as Adidas’ special guest. Having listed main act Skepta as one of his influences, the 23-year-old treated the crowd to some of his hits including Shut Up and Know Me From.
A photo posted by Aqib Anwar (@gibsterg) on
6. Uncle Jheff, the new restaurant from the boys behind Tom & Serg, made its debut
The Bull & Roo crew, responsible for some of Dubai’s favourite foodie hotspots including Tom & Serg, Brunswick Sports Bar and the newly opened Muchachas, were down at Sole to debut their new concept Uncle Jheff. The Thai-inspired street food seemed to go down well with the crowds, so we’re looking forward to the concept setting up shop permanently sometime next year.
7. There was some serious sneaker envy
It wouldn’t be Sole without sneaks, and it seemed everyone was whipping out their most wild, wonderful and expensive pairs. It wasn’t uncommon to see photographers turn their lenses to the ground, snapping up sneakers you’d rarely see on the streets.
8. There were some pretty funky concepts
Emirati entrepreneurs Buthain Al Mazrui and Alamira Noor Bani Hashim debuted their experimental ice cream brand Scoop by No.57, featuring black ice cream. What?
9. The after-party really capped the weekend off
After a busy weekend for all attendees and vendors, the after-party held at Uncle Jheff in the centre of Sole was just what everybody needed to wind down.
10. Sole debuted their second collaboration
The festival teamed up with Puma again this year on these retro-inspired tan leather beauties (Dhs620) – and the Puma stall was teeming with other collabs on the day, including their FENTY PUMA by Rihanna and designs created with STAMPD and Dee & Ricky.
Images: Supplied, Instagram