THE TEN: BLAZER

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WHITELIES appreciates the sneaker liaison of the year between NIKE & Virgil Abloh by presenting an exclusive release series of all ten reconstructed classics. NIKE x Virgil Abloh: Ten Icons Reconstructed launches globally at NikeLab stores and selected retailers like Colette, Dover Street Market, Voo Store, Comme de Garcons or SOTO Store beginning November 9, 2017.


The Blazer was the original Nike basketball shoe. Debuting in 1972, this design turned the then unfamiliar swoosh into a fat-bellied focal point. High enough, but never excessive, in leather or suede, the traction and comfort helped turn the brand into a contender, but it was the aesthetic on this athletic creation that altered everything. Bold colours on the upper or the branding caught attention of the crowds and a new kind of connoisseur at street level. Near-mythical customized editions for high school, college and pro players preempted the world of coveted collaboration, and through Nike retailers on the West Coast — as skateboarding exited empty pools to go aerial — the Blazer became an unofficial skate favourite with the scene’s new stars. In the early 1980s, this simple silhouette was upgraded with a reinforced toe bumper that retained its essence but upped its resilience. When the shoe made its return its authenticity was celebrated with inclusion as a core part of the Nike SB line, plus a key role in a new wave of collaborative projects with icons of the art world.