A true 80’s urbanista would never be caught on the block without a pair of Reebok Hi-Tops highlighted by multicolored slouch socks:

As one of the first athletic shoes created for women, Reebok Freestyle Hi Tops were beloved by everyone from cheerleaders to corporate ladies looking for comfort, and came in a myriad of colors including green, orange, pink, blue, white, black, red, and yellow. The shoes accounted for more than half of Reebok’s sales in 1984, and of course were a favorite of the hip hop community.

Freestyles were dubbed “5411”‘s by urban trendsetters because the shoes, which typically retailed for $49.99, cost $54.11 including tax (this was mainly true for New York City).

To cement their popularity, stars featured 54-11’s in songs, with DMX rapping, “Knew she was a thug/ ‘Cuz when I met her she had her scarf on/ 54-11, size 7 in girls /Baby face, would look nice/ She was 11 with curls.

Thus launched a new term and trend in the black community. Nowadays, you can find many reincarnations of the classic by designers like Married to the Mob and Telfar, among others:

They’re still fly, no?
What are some of your fave 54-11 memories?

For more, visit this F Bomb throwback piece on the shoe here.


Subscribe now to our newsletter