PUMA Black and White


A timeless, straight-forward classic, the so-called “Black and White” trainer is one of the lesser-known and highly mysterious gems from PUMA’s past archive.

The name says it all. Literally. Potentially made and sold as an indoor trainer catering towards a calm and careful demographic, the vintage PUMA Black and White made sure to console the monochromatic appetite of the not-so-loud sneaker crowd. Clean lines and the sleekest of shapes for the upper, the only off-step one could possibly point out is the crisp vertical grooves cut repetitively into the sides of the sole unit, giving it a bit of heavy, structural sense.

We unfortunately cannot elaborate on any non-visual details though, as with so many diamonds in the rough we recover there just aren’t any legible markings, surviving packaging, or even subtle clues to lead us down an informative path. Thankfully it’s not the first time we’ve been blessed with a Black and White’s presence, having previously posted about a West German made pair that shows off a much more vibrant outsole. In fact upon closer inspection the two pairs have a variety of differences, including the color of their sole units, tongue detailing, and even the side stitching traces a slightly different pattern, appearing a bit smoother and more rounded on the pair pictured here. The rest is the same though; same upper, same sole shape, and same concept of a simple, timeless colorway.

Does this pair appear to be older than the West German made’s? Surely it seems so, though the ages are not determinable at this time without further exploration, discovery of hidden details, or lucking out on a clear enough catalog image to prove the date of production (we’ve seen one, from 1977, but there’s no telling if it depicts either of these actual pairs, or a later or early release). Until then though, we’ll gladly bask in the greyscale glory of PUMA’s unknown Black and White.

written by Dylan Cromwell

photography by errol