Nike keeps the Air Max 97s coming with another new pair. This time, the late ’90s runner is dressed in different shades of brown and premium materials.
The upper sports a tan leather upper, black leather overlays, and a light brown suede mudguard. Additional hits include mismatched heel tabs in black and tan, a black mini Swoosh on each side panel, and translucent outsole. Some details can’t help but evoke slight Off-White vibes including a grey and white-striped tongue tab reminiscent of the lines often seen on pieces from Virgil Abloh’s brand, and barcodes on the outsole and heel tab that mimic Abloh’s deconstructed design elements across his own Nike collaborations.
While the exact inspiration for the pair has not been explicitly stated, @J23app on Twitter has speculated a potential theme. The shades of brown and black branding symbolize the cardboard boxes used to ship sneakers, while the barcode simply represents the one slapped on the side of the packaging to be scanned before shipping. The striped tongue represents packing tape and the stamp on the insole is Nike’s box certification for its factory in Memphis.
A release date has yet to be announced for this upcoming Air Max 97, but check out official images below.
UPDATE 01/16: The “Unboxed” Nike Air Max 97 is set to release on Friday, Jan. 18 via Nike SNKRS and other select retailers. The color scheme is inspired by the cardboard boxes that Nike ships its sneakers in.
Nike Air Max 97 “Unboxed”
Release Date: 1/18/19
Color: Ale Brown/Black-Elemental Gold
Style #: 921826-201
Article written by Mike DeStefano #SoleCollector