Meet Yu-Ming: The Man With 900 Shoes

Encountering a male sneaker enthusiast with more pairs of shoes than his female counterpart is an unusual scenario, but most unusual is one who has more shoes than 40 times the average women’s collection combined. Co-founder of and web designer Yu-Ming Wu’s sneaker collection of 800-plus pairs, from brands like Nike, Adidas, and Puma, to name a few, was recently revealed in Women’s Wear Daily’s Footwear News. And with enough pairs to last the tastemaker several years, his recently established blog, Liquidrice, will give designer shoe aficionado and alpha collector Jane Aldridge a run for her Pradas.

According to the article, the collector didn’t get serious with his Dunks and Jordans until his time at Parsons School of Design in New York, when he bought a pair of Nike Max Air 1 running sneakers from a friend.

He told WWD, “Through high school and college, I’d always own a lot of sneakers but I never really collected… But when I got those [Max Air 1], they were so dope that I needed to find more shoes like that.”

We know the feeling. Every time we see a pair of Ann Demeulemeester’s heavenly boots proudly displayed against a storefront window, a hypothetical situation of winning the lottery and buying out the designer’s collection comes to mind.

Wu revealed notable traits of a shoe collector, particularly himself, to the publication – from the amount of time spent on which pair to wear, to his rarest pair and his buying philosophy. Within the organization system of metal industrial shelvings and plastic boxes, it takes Wu “ten to fifteen minutes” to choose a pair from his monstrous collection and his rarest pair is the Nike Carolina Dunks – “one out of 1,000, or something. His pair of Nike Denim Dunk SBs hails as most expensive, costing the collector $1,100. Quite insightful.

The best part of the discussion is his buying philosophy: “If you have a favorite shoe and you don’t have more than one pair, that’s lame.”

Best said coming from a man who has more than one pair of just about every shoe he collects.

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