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.

Adidas Superstar 80s X SNS ‘Kinenbi’

Adidas and famed streetwear brand SNS (SneakersNStuff) have teamed up with renowned designer Kazuki Kuraishi for the “Kinenbi” collection. Kinenbi translates to “anniversary” or “in celebration of” in honour of the Adidas Superstars 50th anniversary.

Alongside the trainers, there are a number of other apparel items from t-shirts, mohair cardigans and parkas. For the offset, the colours scheme is a traditional one using the original black and white colour scheme.

However, it is a vegan construction using a Velcro upper, from the black dyed heel tab, stripes to the white panelling allowing further customisation.

Four patches are included with the shoes, two of which are a flora variation whilst the other two are focused on branding including the SNS KZK patch as well as KINENBI.

The trainers are limited and have been sold via a raffle.

Nike x Comme des Garcons Air Force 1 Mid

Embracing the idea that it is not possible to make something completely new. That was Rei Kawakubo’s mantra when working on a Nike x Comme des Garcons collaboration. Initially revealed at Paris fashion week, this has been a highly anticipated shoe.

Looking through the back catalogue of Comme des Garcons and taking a beloved Nike Classic to create a shoe that is still truly AF1 sprinkled with Comme des Garcons greatness.

The two customized styles feature paneled cut-outs with raw edges on the shoe’s leather exterior and Comme des Garcons embossed on its proprioceptors belt. The textured effect is a new application for the AF1.

Offered in both black and white and on sale in select Comme des Garcons retailers, but if you can’t wait, StockX is always the place to go.

Adidas STRUNG – The future of trainers?

Adidas has been pushing innovation over and over with its shoes, 4D lattice technology for the midsole was phenomenal – 3D printing brought mainstream. Now the Adidas Future team has worked on how robotics and athlete data can influence trainers.

They created a software known as STRUNG to create uppers using that data. It selects each individual thread and  and data-mapped for a seamless, lightweight fit. This goes away from traditional methods of knitting where threads can typically only be set horizontally or vertically. With this technology the engineers can determine where every thread needs to set in any given direction, creating the lightest and strongest textile design.

The first product using this technology is FUTURECRAFT.STRUNG which combines the upper technology with the 4D lattice midsole to be the industry’s first ever fully athlete data-coded shoe used for runners that run short distances at 5m/s or faster. Every millimetre of the shoe precisely tuned or “coded” to support movement and performance during these fast runs.

This shoe is an example of what Adidas can do with the technology and is still working toward a shoe that can be released to the masses for later in 2021 or early 2022. It will be interesting what other sneaker makers come up with to compete.

Nike ISPA Drifter Gator promises to keep your feet dry

Nike ISPA, an arm of Nike that has a very specific philosophy – Improvise. Scavenge. Protect. Adapt. Basically pushing the boundaries of their designers to answer questions and the Nike ISPA Drifter Gator does just that.

The Drifter Gator is a shoe that is prepared for any shift in the weather, with an integrated gator that can be deployed and used when needed. It wraps around the leg, forming a waterproof membrane that will keep legs dry during cycling or walking in bad weather. Once you are back inside, roll it up and carry on with your day.

The sole, as on the original Drifter, is built with a lightweight, supple foam compound that includes regrind Nike ZoomX foam — a key component of Nike’s fast marathon shoes. The shoe’s upper shifts from a split toe design to a hearty full toe form to provide stability and prevent abrasion.

The Drifter Gator is due for release on October 8th at £189.95, here in the UK.