The Nike GO FlyEase

Have you ever felt like putting trainers on are a chore? Or just difficult due to lack of mobility? Velcro was one of the movers in helping when laces were troublesome, but you still needed to undo and do up the straps and put on/ pull off the shoes.

Nike has been working on multiple iterations and created a true hands-free shoe. The GO FlyEase has a bi-stable hinge that enables the shoe to be secure in fully open and fully closed states. FlyEase is driven by a design ethos that champions the value of a suite of systems that work toward a common goal: making shoes easier for everyone.

The tensioner’s unique flexibility completely reimagines kicking off the shoes as basis for accessible and empowering design. By extending the rear heel into a pivoting motion, people can easily slip in and out of trainers.

The trainers are available to a select Nike Members via invite and will be widely released later this year.

Jordan x CLOT XIV Low and XXXV

Jordan and CLOT, founded by Edison Chen and Kevin Poon, the brand has collaborated with the likes of Nike, visvim, fragment design, Coca-Cola, Stüssy, Medicom Toy and more, have released their Chinese New Year versions of Air Jordan XIV Low and the Jordan Brand’s latest performance vehicle, the Air Jordan XXXV.

Both shoes extend CLOT’s investigation of Chinese heritage — tying together elements like a Chinese coin pendant and Chinese knot to the heel of the XIV Low and introducing pops of ornamental jade to the XXXV. 

The XIV Low has a tongue reminiscent of a traditional Chinese scroll with the words Jordan and CLOT. On the sole, there are terracotta-colored accents complemented with light tan and grey, whilst the shoes have a traditional Chinese knot and coin hanging off the heel.

The XXXV has elements of Chinese jade, a highly prized and timeless symbol of Chinese culture, representing many positive attributes such as durability, purity and beauty. The shoe also carries hang tags bearing both the Jumpman and CLOT logos, reflective elements throughout and gold lace eyelets.

Both shoes will be available February 8 at juicestoreusa.com with a wider release on February 11.

Nike x Virgil Abloh: Icons

Nike and Virgil Abloh have had a longstanding relationship and are cementing it with a book titled ‘Icons’ that explores how the partnership works to unify all the intangible cultural threads connected to sneakers.

Underpinned by The Ten, a design project where Virgil collaboratively explored 10 Nike footwear silhouettes, establishing his now respected reconstructed design language.

The book traces Abloh’s investigative, creative process through documentation of prototypes, original text messages from Abloh to Nike designers and treasures from the Nike archives showing the 50 shoes that Virgil has designed for Nike. Readers will find Swooshes sliced away from Air Jordans and reapplied with tape or thread, Abloh’s quotation marks trialed on Nike Air Force 1s and Converse All Stars cut into pieces.

The book builds upon Abloh’s printed matter practice — archiving, documenting and storytelling through books and ephemera in service of preserving important cultural stories. It will be available from today (Jan 22nd) via Nike SNKRS in America, and through Off-White and Canary Yellow, before a wider release globally on February 5th.

Nike SB Dunk Low Street Hawker celebrates Chinese cuisine

Designed by Guangzhou artist Jason Deng, the Nike SB Dunk Low Street Hawker is celebrating the food culture in China, mainly depicted by six regional dishes from six Chinese cities, combined with a slew of other, subtly-incorporated nods to Chinese cuisine.

The pair of shoes has 22 specific elements that focus on the food culture from both heel tabs  featuring Chinese calligraphy for “food” in black and white thread and four colors of laces are inspired by four essential seasonings in Chinese cuisine: green (shallots), yellow (ginger), white (garlic) and black (black pepper). That’s what is on both shoes, the other 20 elements are featured on either the left or the right.

Left shoe
The left shoe uses a lighter beige for three flour-based dishes. The suede toebox mimics the color and texture of green bean soup (Douzhi) from Beijing. Donut (Jiaoquan) patterns on the forefoot pair with the green bean soup.

Embossed suede on the lateral side shows shredded pita bread pieces for a traditional Xi’an dish: pita bread soaked in mutton soup.That mutton soup is represented in water-color patterns across the lateral side.

The Swoosh is depicted in a wood-grain texture to represent chopsticks. On the lateral heel, water-color fading looks like Yangchun noodles. An embroidered 10-cent copper coin appears on the lateral heel, hinting at Yangchun noodles.

The left insole resembles a blue sky, inspired by traditional Chinese slang implying that people treat food as their heaven. The blue lining of the left midsole mimics the blue-and-white of fine porcelain bowls.

Right shoe
The right shoe features hotter colors to represent different heats, from spicy to sweet. The metallic color on the right toebox is pulled from Chengdu hotpots in which dishes are cooked.

Boiling chili-oil treatments bubble around the toebox. Ostrich leather on the lateral side is inspired by the crispy roasted goose skin that’s famous in Guangzhou. The silver Swoosh resembles the metal hook used to hang the roast goose. The flame and Lychee wood used to roast the goose appears in a watercolor pattern around the eyelets.

Shaved ice and taro balls — a common Taipei dessert — can be found on the heel counter. The insole paints the scene of a bench terrace, a landscaping method used to grow rice paddies.

The collar lining reflects the color of meat dishes. The yellow outsole represents cooking oils.

This food inspired pair will be launching on the Nike SNKRS app on Jan 13th and if you can’t wait till then, maybe go sample some of the great food that is represented on each shoe to really immerse yourself in Chinese food culture.

The BSTN GT XI by MANSORY

If you thought 2020 couldn’t get any weirder, two brands I never thought would collaborate have created a ride-on lawnmower of all things.

Mansory, the brand for bringing the mad customised vehicles and BSTN Premium Sportswear, Germany’s leading source for premium sportswear which has been at the forefront of Jordan releases for generations have come together to create this one of one customised lawnmower. The story goes that Tinker Hatfield, famed Nike designer was inspired by a ride-on lawnmower when designing the Air Jordan XI.

The BSTN GT XI is a unique ride-on lawnmower with custom-made carbon body parts, a lavishly designed leather-carbon seat and a leather-carbon steering wheel, typical features that can also be found on all other complete conversions from MANSORY.

In addition, the colour silver – the traditional colour of a 25th anniversary – finds its use on the GT XI just as selectively distributed as the various Jumpman, BSTN and MANSORY logos on the entire GT XI.

Nike: Better is temporary – MUST HAVE

Sneakerheads aren’t just about the culture of trainers, the history and design philosophies of some of the greatest trainers make collecting ever stronger. Think of it in the same context of cars and watches – learning about the design strengthens the affinity for the brand.

For the first time, Nike has allowed people behind the scenes to look at its design philosophy. The book’s title is drawn from a conversation with Nike’s Chief Design Officer, John Hoke, who explains, “I fundamentally believe that the central thesis of Nike is ‘The best is temporary at best.’”

In the same way we saw Porsche release its look into its Unseen prototypes, here the author, Sam Grawe combines exclusive access to Nike’s World Headquarters with insights from Nike creatives and executives to delve deeply into an ethos-driven design formula that is as ephemeral as it is influential.

The book opens with an introductory section, then through five thematic chapters explores Nike’s focus on performance, brand expression, collaboration, inclusive design and sustainability. Giving clearer definitions on questions people ask about athlete collaborations, to how some of the best Nike ads were created, onto cultivating partnerships, inclusivity and sustainability.

The book comes minimally packaged, binding two exposed cardboard covers in a single layer non-woven jacket. It is available at select retailers and Phaidon ahead of its wider release in late January 2021 at a price of £69.95.

Nike x Fear Of God collection

Jerry Lorenzo, Founder of Fear of God says that the basketball practice short carries the same emotional weight as five pocket denim, built up in the 80s and 90s.

He has teamed up with Nike to accentuate these American classics and highlight the emotion of sport through garments. The mesh short started off as functional wear is now being recreated as an evocation of of an era when style by how items were worn, not the item itself.

“This is how we think players should come to the arena — we’re really trying to take it back to more honest times,” says Lorenzo. “It was different then, it wasn’t so much about the garments in the way that it is today. It was really about the guys. They could have been stepping on the backs of their shoes, because they just didn’t feel like putting them on …but it just looked so cool.”

This new collection reimagines classic NBA warmup and practice pieces through Fear of God’s aesthetic prism. The garments combine old- and new-school elements with clean silhouettes and premium materials for a comfortable, modernized expression of shoot-around style.