WORDS BY JOSEPH FURNESS
The Air Jordan 1 is a sell-your-soul sort of sneaker. In essence, they are a lot like their namesake, Michael Jordan: reliable, athletically inclined and forever cool. Here’s what you need to know.
The History of the Air Jordan
The year is 1985, everyone is watching Back to the Future, listening to Whitney Houston through their Sony Walkmans and trying to perfect the perfect scrunch perm. It’s also the year that the first pair of Air Jordans were designed by Peter Moore - though, at first, Michael Jordan wasn’t so keen on the trainer’s aesthetic. In fact, he believed they’d make him look like a clown. Although it wasn’t love at first sight, the sneaker slowly grew on the basketball star which led to the birth of the Nike Jordan brand — now more recognised than the man himself.
It was rumoured that the NBA would fine Michael Jordan every time he stepped out on-court wearing the trainers. But Nike enjoyed the association of Jordan with rebelliousness so much that they were willing to pay the fine - a few thousand dollars per game - themselves. Such reports helped Nike build enough hype around the sneaker for it to be an instant sell-out. Long story short, the birth of the Jordans also brought with it the birth of the hypebeast.
Air Jordan Design
Air Jordans were designed to be lower to the ground than previous Nike shoes, so that ‘His Airness’ could feel the court at his feet. The leather upper and it’s stitched construction was sturdy enough to help Magic Jordan be on top-form for every game.
The silhouette was originally released in 13 colourways during the mid-eighties, including the Royal Blue - the first to be released to the public.
But really? The G.O.A.T.?
The Nike Air Jordan 1 — the shoe that kick-started the sneakerverse — is SO fresh yet SO old, how could it not be the G.O.A.T? Come on, what’s more classic than flexing some J’s on your feet? It’s classic, it’s a sneakerhead essential and it has an American Idol-style backstory. What more do you need?
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