DTLR Exclusive: New Balance DC992 “Discover & Celebrate”

When thinking about the nation’s capital, the White House, political parties, and government are some things that first come to mind. Unaware tourists from all across the globe attend scheduled sessions with historians to learn about the preserved literature, archival paintings/portraits, and unparalleled catalog of museums that reside only in the District of Columbia. However, in the streets of D.C., Washingtonians' cultural influence is engraved in the city by way of its rhythmic sounds of muffled Go-Go vibrations, and lava Red mumbo sauce to put on your piping hot chicken wings. On infamous blocks, you’ll spot a group of blinding runners on, where wearers have no plans on running anywhere. As the streets get warmer, memorable moments last longer at rap lyric-driven nightclubs and world-renowned day parties. Yes, despite the obvious reasons why visitors and residents live in the district, there’s so much to ‘Discover & Celebrate’ throughout the metropolitan area.

The Designer & New Balance Connection

Three years ago, June Sanders (Product Design Manager at DTLR) was looking for the city to not only make its mark in music, slang, culture, or food but fashion as well. Born in D.C. and raised in nearby suburb Prince Georges County, Maryland, June was in search of a brand that spoke to the style of residents. Unanimously, New Balance was the brand selected to speak for the people. New Balance is an American made company born and bred in Boston, Massachusetts. Washington D.C. grew an unconditional love for the Boston based shoe and began making waves due to its skyrocket sales in surrounding markets, at all ages. At a time when most sneakerheads didn’t consider NB to be dope unless you come from the DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) area. Popularity can never dictate community, which was proven as generations inherit the NB lifestyle. Even though you’ll spot a collection of colorways throughout the streets, there are certain numbers that locals attract more than others. The 4th version of the 990 models was used to create the “DMV” inspired details in classic Grey (and then alternate colorway released in solid Black). Made in the U.S., the New Balance 990v4 “DMV” became a sought after themed sneaker, bought as a pack or sold separately. Since then, NB heads have been anticipating a drop to once again embody regional pride.

The D.C. Inspiration

If you’ve heard the phrase, “Aye Moe!” piercing your eardrum in excitement, then you understand the D.C. experience unlike most outside the metro rail. To commute your soundtrack is a Dj radio mix of bands ‘crankin’ on the tube. To make the sight complete, a crispy pair of NB’s with the loosened laces is the finishing touch. This way of life is often overlooked, even though this trendsetting style birthed the industry craze seen today. Big G for example, has not only been using his celebrity for philanthropic efforts in D.C. but also to champion the city’s culture by promoting NB at DTLR Community Outreach functions, along with guest only private events. His involvement stems from years of appreciation for the very streets that made him a man. Through that coming of age, New Balance was and still is the sneaker of choice if you reside anywhere near a monument. Ensuring credit is given to the nation’s capital for the NB movement is what Big G wants to get across with this rare release. This special rendition of a classic 992 model is solely focused on the diamond-shaped district.

The Design

Contrary to the previous inspiration from the neighboring state of Maryland, the newly named ‘DC992’ is intended for the inner Washingtonian in you to “Discover & Celebrate” (DC). To start on the good foot, DTLR is releasing an exclusive silhouette paying homage to the city. After countless hours of designing and brainstorming, Chocolate City is represented proudly, using the D.C. flag as the focal point. The spirit of each ward is prevalent, as the classic Grey suede is now revamped with noticeable enhancements to accented sections. Metallic Silver reflective mesh on the netted vamp is highlighted with curvaceous Black overlays. Following suit, the Black NB logo in the quarter outlined by White trimming shines bright no matter the angle. While the eyelets and tongue keep contrast in place, a miniature embroidered “N” is stitched to perfection. Right above the symbolic letter lies a Scarlet Red 992 tongue logo, bringing back a numeric feature that hasn’t been seen in years. The heel counter kept it familiar with the clear heel stabilizer with ‘new balance’ printed across the panel. Directly underneath is the ENCAP midsole is multi-layered to provide a soft cushion to go with its triple colored rubber exterior. The aesthetic is complete, as the official D.C. flag is placed in an oval shield on the heels respectively.

From its slang that grew national popularity to the elaborate nightlife (pre-COVID), celebrities and civilians alike savor every bite they take of the delicious Chocolate City. This theme is a token of appreciation to D.C., a city that has given so much to culture through trendsetting and trailblazing. As a wonderful souvenir to commemorate discoveries to celebrate, this special edition pair is quintessential to wear in the District of Columbia and beyond.

The New Balance DC992 “Discover & Celebrate” is out on 05/28/2021 on www.dtlr.com and at local DTLR/VILLA locations.