Nike’s Air Jordan brand has been a retail and cultural phenomenon since the 1980’s. Beyond the greatness of its namesake, the shoe sub-line and model have been fixtures in the world of sportswear, sneaker culture, and the entire retail industry for almost three decades. The shoes themselves have even caught the eyes of many great designers in the fashion world, a lot of which have incorporated their own style on the classic models. One of the latest to do so is Virgil Abloh through a collaboration between his brand, Off-White, and the American sportswear giant for a reinterpretation of the Air Jordan 1.
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Release date: June 23, 2018
Off-White has been one of the biggest champions of high fashion streetwear in recent years. Its founder, Virgil Abloh, took the brand to greater heights when he started collaborating with established brands to further the appeal of sportswear and streetwear to upscale consumers. In June 23rd of 2018, Off White and Nike released a new version of the classic Air Jordan 1, with each pair costing $190.
Everything people love about Air Jordan 1 are all present at the Off-White variation as well. The hi-top silhouette, the comfortable padding, and the extraordinary durability—it’s all there. In keeping with Off-White’s signature of ‘approachable fashion,’ a lot of the stitching of the new details—particularly the leather swoosh logo—are evident and even made use of different colored thread to really pop out. The shoes are also released in three different colorways: blue for the “UNC,” white for the “WHITE,” and arguably the most popular, red for the “TEN.”
A lot of the criticism that Virgil Abloh has gotten through the years is that he doesn’t have original ideas, but rather rehashes tropes of streetwear into more refined pieces. Arguably, the same can be said about his reiteration of Air Jordan 1. Apart from the (slightly gimmicky) home-crafted approach to design, there’s little to no difference between this new Air Jordan 1 model to the original. The silhouette, the cuts, and the materials all remain the same, all of which put to question the actual worth of the collaborative shoe.
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