It doesnâ€™t take a sneakerhead to spot the royalty that is the sneaker brand, Jhung Yuro. The majestic touch begins with the buttery brown leather boxes that cradle each pair.
Founded in 2005 by ex-Reebok staffer Kris Wright, Jhung Yuro (pronounced â€œyoung Euroâ€) represents a new genre of fresh generation kicks whose colorways, materials and construction progress unencumbered by trends or the frenzied hype scene. In fact, just as the companyâ€™s mantra states, the average Jhung Yuro customer may be in search of something a little different than your typical hypebeast â€“ something like luxury without the noise, a classic shoe with all of the cred and none of the clamour.
Take, for instance, the normal shocks and splatters of sneaker colorways. While the world outside the walls of Wrightâ€™s growing company is full of loud patterns and vibrant soles, a typical Jhung Yuro palate comes courtesy of traveling inspirations and Wrightâ€™s own personal preference. â€œReally it just depends on my mood at that particular time. I choose what I think fits the moment,â€ says the designer. Not that his restricted color inclinations make the shoes any less exciting, because his moods and moments graciously encompass things like snakes, whose shiny skins crawl their way into the high-end shoesâ€™ detailing.
The clean lines, modern maturity, and progressive materials of Jhung Yuroâ€˜s collections seem effortless, but like any good thing, they are no accident. The unique line of high-end sneakers was born from Wrightâ€™s intention to create a more formal sneaker. â€œWhile we have athletic-inspired silhouettes, the goal has been, and will continue to be offering a luxury product that fits a variety of lifestyles for todayâ€™s metropolitan man.â€
It was no doubt Wrightâ€™s eight years at Reebok â€“ a stint that began as a hard working college intern and progressed through design and marketing positions â€“ that shaped these refined sneaker sensibilities. The same history may be responsible for the wooing of Jhung Yuroâ€™s biggest fans: trendsetting, fashion-conscious men who view life’s luxuries as necessity rather than desires.
Now in its third year, Jhung Yuro has proven itself – both on the feet of Nas and in the pages of Hypebeast â€“ to be one of the most exciting and significant sneaker start-ups of our generation. With the progression of each season, Wrightâ€™s designs and direction continue to establish the brand as one whose presence we should grow accustomed to. This seasons offerings only mirror those sentiments, with another round of what Wright calls, â€œThe best quality leather, suede, nubuck and pig-skin available,â€ in addition to more classic Jhung Yuroâ€™s textiles, reflective accents and hand-made construction.
However, while the sneaks do tend to make even the strongest man swoon, Wright advises against the sneakerphile habit of keeping your prettiest shoes closeted until the perfect moment, instead believing that footwear is an element of personal style, and not something to obsess over. Strong words from a man who only recently emerged as the head of his brand – a calculated move by Wright to make sure the shoe had their own strengths before attaching them to a face. â€œI always felt the product was most important at the end of the day, so it was important for me that the product speak for itself from day one. With Jhung Yuro certainly gaining appeal in the marketplace in the few short years since its launch, I think now is a good point for me to start telling the brand story and shining a light on the person behind it all.â€
We agree with Wrightâ€™s decision to step under the spotlight, if only because a side-effect of that decision has arrived in the shape of Ceasar Lunix, a newly launched line of more affordable sneakers sharing the design sensibilities of itâ€™s parent brand. â€œWhen I launched Jhung Yuro, I wanted to eventually see it grow into every distribution channel possible â€“ from high-end departments stores to mass market chains. Ceasar Lunix is first evolution of that, with more on the horizon.â€
With over 100 new retail accounts, it looks like it wonâ€™t be too long before we can all get our hands on a pair of Kris Wrightâ€™s new generation of shoes. In the meantime, weâ€™ll keep scouring the pages of our favorite sneaker blogs, waiting for that glint of snakeskin to shake us out of our color-blocked, neon-laced stupor.