She Got Game: How @lala.rita Is Elevating Sneaker Culture in Paris

  • Air Jordan 4 Cavs lala.rita

    Can you remember the first sneaker you got that turned you into a collector?

    “It all started in 2010, around six years ago. My brother has been a sneakers addict for more than 15 years. He is a real collector. He never wears them and keeps all of them in a box. I’m very thankful for him today because he helped push me to be there now. The first two years I took my time to be interested by him in learning about the Air Max Huarache, Presto, Roshe, Cortez, Jordan I, IV, V…I spent my time and my energy to understand what is the difference between all of them, what gave more value than another one because I was totally a novice in this fashion market. And I bought my first shoes two years later. One day in May of 2012 at Châtelet (a Paris fashion area), I choose the Jordan IV ‘Cavs’ for my first purchase.”

    1 of 11
  • adidas Yeezy Boost lala.rita

    What’s your favorite sneaker right now? What are you wearing the most?

    “Without any doubt, my favorite one right now is the Yeezy Boost 350. I have also the ‘Black Pirate’ and ‘Oxford Tan’ but it’s hard to have just only one favorite because 2015 was a revelation to me for sneakers with the Nike Sock Dart model. So I wear that one very often–the ‘Sock Dart.’ I love all of them so much and of course my favorite are for sure the ‘Black Pirate’ Yeezy Boosts.”

    2 of 11
  • What are the sneakers currently in your rotation?

    “Yeezy Boost, Flyknit Racer, Sock Dart, Air Max 1.”

    3 of 11
  • lala.rita

    How many pairs do you have and where do you store everything?

    “Many people ask me this same question. Funny! I can only say that I don’t have any place now in my apartment. It’s full!  But it is not a problem because I know that I can store them in the box in my brother’s area. I can’t tell you exactly how much I have but it’s huge. Also, I sold many of them too.”

    4 of 11
  • adidas Yeezy Boost 350 lala.rita

    What are the most popular shoes among the community in your region right now?

    “I would say it depends on the time and the release of adidas too, but currently the hit is Yeezy Boost, and I would also say that all shoes that come in a limited edition are even more successful too.”

    5 of 11
  • lala.rita

    What cool things has your love of sneakers enabled you to do?

    “One of the most cool things is the invitation I get for new shop inaugurations of new sneakers in Paris and another one in London for the latest sneakers products. I meet great people from all over the world, and I receive so many cool gifts.”

    6 of 11
  • Nike Sock Dart lala.rita

    You have dope some images on your page. What is your process behind your shots on Instagram?

    “Thank you. I am very exigeante (demanding in English). Sometimes I post pictures every day on my Instagram, sometimes I don’t post for a week. It depends. I have a rule which is none other than sneakers. Ideas can come to me immediately in my mind but I became very picky with myself; before posting a photo I can take a long time before publishing, between shooting, then retouching. I care only about results, that’s the most important for me. I also have a website where all photos are very professional and different from my Instagram. I also take pleasure in publishing and writing there too.”

    7 of 11
  • lala.rita

    What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to get a good sneaker picture for Instagram?

    “It is necessary to know that I am afraid of nothing, I can do everything, I have no limit because nothing is impossible in life. I am not dizzy and I always look for strong sensations. But in Paris we do not have many high buildings like New York City or Dubai. But I’m happy with what we have here…I have already sat on the roof of a house, climbed scaffolds, risen above the rail of a quay of Paris, up suspended in the space with the cars which I saw driving, sat above a cliff. But the problem is photographers don’t still follow me sometimes. They are afraid for my life; they tell me that I am crazy! My circle of acquaintances does not understand why I can take so much risk for a photo which will be posted on IG. But I don’t make it only for my Instagram, I also make it for me because I love adrenaline. I remember a shooting I made in a ruined warehouse. We had risen at the very top and we had a view on all the city. My idea was to sit, my legs in the space. My photographer believed I would die and I laughed and I said, “Go take the pic.” And a few days later I had a ‘like’ from @adidasOriginals. I was so proud!

    8 of 11
  • Do you have a particular style that you think works best for yourself? If so, how would you describe it?

    “In general I am very feminine. I took a long time before to wear sneakers honestly. I like simple things; for me all details are important. I love wearing torn jeans with a tank top or a simple T-shirt but the choice of sneaker that I put to feet is very essential.”

    9 of 11
  • Nike Air Max 1 lala.rita

    What are some of your goals for the future with your work?

    “Instagram has become my soulmate for two years. I am a totally friendly addict–I can’t hide it. I created my account just for my own pleasure, my own passion for sneakers, and I wish I will continue in this way for a long time. I love discovering new photographers. The business does not interest me like most people who want to convert in cash money. I will not accept any partnership; I don’t accept to be paid or accept contests. My followers are very aware of that and I didn’t think they would all understand and admire. Why not conquer Dubai? This city has a huge potential; everything there is possible. I have contacts there at the bottom and the sneaker market needs to be developed.”

    10 of 11
  • What are the five sneakers every female should have in her rotation?

    Nike Air Max 1 Parra x Patta Cherrywood

    Nike Flyknit Racer “Orca”

    adidas Yeezy Boost 350 “Black Pirate” or “Turtle Dove”

    Nike Sock Dart “Oreo” or “Be True”

    Asics Gel Lyte V “Rose Gold”

    11 of 11
  • Air Jordan 4 Cavs lala.rita
  • adidas Yeezy Boost lala.rita
  • lala.rita
  • adidas Yeezy Boost 350 lala.rita
  • lala.rita
  • Nike Sock Dart lala.rita
  • lala.rita
  • Nike Air Max 1 lala.rita

Sneaker culture is growing.

You can find a sneakerhead in just about every country, every city. Just look at Lala Rita. Born and raised in Paris, she got into the game after watching her brother collect rare pairs while they were growing up and she credits him for introducing her to the culture. Her Instagram account @Lala.Rita is full of high-quality images of her traveling exploits, yes, but more importantly she blesses nearly 77,000 followers with consistent images of her massive sneaker collection. She has international appeal, taking pictures in places like Paris and Dubai, which makes her account very unique and different, while still keeping it fresh with Yeezy and Jordan-inspired art.

The average sneakerhead, even those big enough to be labeled influencers on the ‘gram, has a narrow focus. But @Lala.Rita? She exhibits an eye for detail and versatility, blending high class and feminine products with stylish streetwear pieces.

“In general I am very feminine,” she told The Drop. “I took a long time before to wear sneakers honestly. I like simple things; for me all details are important. I love wearing torn jeans with a tank top or a simple T-shirt but the choice of sneaker that I put to feet is very essential.”

Lala Rita is like a sneakerhead version of world-renowned artist Banksy. Leaves her mark wherever she goes. Doesn’t want the partnerships or the fame. Appreciates her anonymity. While you may never see her face or know her real name, nothing is going to stop her from putting up some dope content, especially considering she has a global plan to expand the sneaker market into different international cities. She is starting first with Dubai, the city she is planning on moving to as soon as possible.

We had the opportunity to connect with Lala Rita about her sneaker collection, what that adrenaline feels like when you’re snapping the perfect sneaker picture, and her next big move. Read up on How @lala.rita Became One of Biggest Sneakerheads in Paris.

Follow Jarrel: Instagram // Twitter

all images via @lala.rita