VIRGIL ABLOH IN BOSTON, NEW BALANCE IN TOKYO – THIS WEEK IN SNEAKERS

VIRGIL ABLOH IN BOSTON, NEW BALANCE IN TOKYO – THIS WEEK IN SNEAKERS

by Sam Le Roy
5 min
Comme Des Garcons ©

Following on from last week’s roundup – which featured some Halloween themed sneakers, as well as highlights from Paris Fashion week from Matthew M. Williams – we saw many a release rumour come about as well as some massive news from industry heavyweights. Let’s get right into it. 

THIS WEEK’S NEWS

VIRGIL ABLOH’S CANARY YELLOW AIR FORCE 1

Virgil Abloh is no stranger to collaboration. With nearly 100 shoes released in partnership with Nike through his OFF-WHITE label, and even more coming from LV, his impact on sneaker culture has been immeasurable ever since his “The Ten” project dropped way back when. After long last we finally saw a shock drop of a garishly colored Air Force 1 named “Lemonade” over the weekend, exclusively at Virgil’s ICA Boston exhibit – retail was $150, and resale is way over 10x that as of right now. 

 

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CDG’S SS22 RUNWAY SHOWCASES THE AIR SUNDER MAX

CDG and Nike have had one of the most incredible partnerships, with classic silhouettes (think Air Mowabb, Air Carnivore, and Shox) being remixed to Rei Kawakubo’s design philosophy. Generally we see models debuted on the runway in Comme Des Garcons shows many months in advance of any release, and this time we see no difference, with the SS22 collection showcasing another heritage banger. The Nike Air Sunder Max has been modified heavily and warped into a new form, all while conserving the familiar zip fastener running up the foot. With no word on release date just yet, this is a pair to keep an eye out for – part of me wishes they kept the square armor plates on the upper though.

Comme Des Garcons ©

ALEALI MAY X JORDAN BRAND 

The most prolific female Air Jordan collaborator in history is back with two new pairs: an Air Jordan 14 “Fortune” inspired by her family and adorned with a jade-like green tooling, as well as a military-inspired Air Jordan 4. The 4 is a home run – there’s no doubt about that. The 14 is generally underappreciated as a silhouette, but if anyone can breathe new life into the model, it’s Aleali; she seemingly never misses with these collaborations.

 

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ADIDAS X BAD BUNNY – EVEN MORE TO COME?

Last week I spoke on a melting ZX 8000 coming from Bad Bunny and adidas – this week I’m even happier to write about a Response CL following similar design cues. The two color options (a tonal blend of creams, or a highlighter yellow) join the ZX 8000 and make up the “Ice Cream” pack. With all of the Bad Bunny x adidas collabs coming out this year, the Puerto Rican superstar is no doubt the best collaborator the Three Stripes has in terms of rivalling big collabs from Nike and New Balance.

adidas ©

ANGELO BAQUE’S FIRST PERSONAL COLLABORATION

New Yorker – and front man for the wonderful Awake NYAngelo Baque unveiled his debut personal collaboration with ASICS. While Awake has seen many a collaboration come to fruition over the years (with the best undoubtedly being the green/silver GEL-Kayano 360) this GEL-Kayano 14 comes as a product of partnership between ASICS and Angelo Baque himself. The 14 is such a strong silhouette that we’ve not seen draped in such color until now, and while I usually stay away from this kind of thing, I’m a fan.

 

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RELEASES OF THE WEEK: 12.07.2021 – 17.07.2021

This week, New Balance is once again king. Today we see Ronnie Fieg’s RC 1300 release in three colorways, in what is an homage to the collaborator’s first project together a decade ago. The MADE 990v2 “Version 2” is also set to release, with a luxury blend of suedes and red detailing throughout. Then there’s the ever so clean collaboration with AURALEE – the Japan-exclusive release does away with in-your-face branding for a minimalistic look. This pair might just rival the 550’s Aime Leon Dore has released up until now. 

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My favorite release of the week however, comes from Nike. In an era of collaborations and lack-luster colorway repetitions on heritage silhouettes, the ISPA line has provided fresh new product laden with technological advancements and modern aesthetics. The ISPA Road Warrior from months ago, while received as a “WTF?” shoe for many, is an exciting silhouette I want to see developed upon. Or, at least, the daring, limitless design that went into it. The line’s latest release comes by way of a “ISPA Flow” in a duo of elemental colorways. This is a sporty, aggressive sneaker that you’ll either love or hate, and I happen to be the former – that midsole is just too cool.

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