Air Jordan 1 x Off-White™
Virgil Abloh, the famed designer and founder of luxury fashion label Off-White™, began his partnership with Nike at the end of 2016. By 2017, the pair had come up with new versions of ten classic sneaker designs from the company’s history, all of which had been reworked by Abloh himself. His creative imprint was stamped onto each design via elements such as the Helvetica font text and the lifted swooshes, which have a DIY look. One of the most popular of The Ten is the Jordan 1 x Off-White™, the original silhouette already an icon in its own right. With Abloh’s masterful touch, it has gone on to become an even more memorable sneaker.
The first Air Jordan 1 x Off-White™ release comes in the signature tones of the OG Chicago colorway, leading to it carrying that name in many circles. Like its counterpart, it has red leather overlays, but its midfoot and toe are covered in white mesh and its medial swoosh has been removed to reveal a paragraph of text detailing the collaboration. Its lateral swoosh has been enlarged and appears to float over the upper, only connected at the front and rear by small sections of blue stitching. An orange tag sticks out below the tail of the swoosh, and the word “Air” can be seen in black on the midsole beneath. Like other Off-White™ sneakers, it has a characteristic zip tie looped around the laces.
This handcrafted look has been carried over onto the other sneakers in Off-White’s AJ1 collection, including the next in the series, 2018’s Off-White™ x Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG ‘White’, which was released in both men’s and kids versions. This elegant colorway maintains the brand’s deconstructed style, but almost every feature is coated in a clean white tone, from the outsole to the leather overlays and the swoosh. Even the Air Jordan Wings have been imprinted into the lateral collar without any variation in color so that they also appear white. Elsewhere, the blue stitching and orange tag around the Nike logo remain, and orange branding shows up on the tongue label, while Abloh’s trademark black text can be seen on the medial flank, midsole and laces.
Just a few months after the white version had come out, Jordan Brand launched another high-top Off-White™ collaboration known as the UNC. Representing Michael Jordan’s early days playing for the University of North Carolina, whose colors are blue and white, the sneaker is known to many fans as the Off-White™ University Blue for its similarity to the classic UNC colorway, though its overlays exhibit a slightly darker shade of blue. As well as this azure tone, the shoe has a white underlayer, a blue swoosh with bright orange thread connecting it to the upper and a pair of white Air Jordan Wings on its lateral collar.
Abloh’s changes to the Air Jordan 1 created something completely new from a model that had been around for decades. This resulted in a beloved shoe with huge amounts of flair and style whose limited edition status has seen it become a highly prized collector’s item. There really is nothing quite like the Jordan 1 x Off-White™.