With NIKE AIR MAX DAY: 24 HOURS HONOURING 27 YEARS OF GREATNESS coming up later this week, we thought we’d grab a couple of our favourite Air Max 1s to talk about from the past few years. Being youngsters when the original Air Max 1 released in 1987, our pocket money struggled to cover the expense of what was one of the top running shoes of its era – but that premium status just made it extra special.
It’s difficult to pinpoint an overall favourite edition of the AM1: the list of great colourways is just too long. Purists will always go for the OG from 1987, but digging back through the archives reveals plenty of worthy counterparts: the highly-sought Patta/Parra burgundy release, any of the CLOT co-labs, the Amsterdams, the Kid Robots (especially the pink hyperstrike version), the Hufs, Ben Drury’s Hold Tight edition, the amazing Urawas… There are so many options that it’s almost impossible to narrow it down. And, of course, any list is subjective: one man’s ‘yes!’ is another man’s ‘yuck!’. But with all that in mind, it’s unlikely that the following two (well worn and loved) editions will have many haters out there…
First up, we’ve picked the uber-classic Atmos Air Max 1 B Safari from 2002. Atmos are kings of the Air Max 1 co-labs, having put together several great colour schemes for the shoe, but this one is one of the greatest collaborative models of all-time. The original Nike Safari was an anomaly at the time of release. No-one really understood the shoe’s true intended purpose, the colours were unusual for the time and as a result it was hard to find on the shelves. But once public taste had caught up with this inventive shoe, we started to see elements crop up across a number of different models. There have been many Safari colourways over the years, but no-one did it as well as this. The unusual colours only went to highlight the Air Max 1’s variety of panels on the upper section, whilst the uncoventional canvas twill toe box and dark green swoosh on the medial side added a little extra detail that you might not notice at first. This shoe currently commands a high price, but when these dropped over 10 years ago, they were plentiful: they didn’t get a global release, but they were everywhere in Japan and Australia (including sales racks in a few shops). Sidelining the jade and the Viotech Atmos AM1s, these are perhaps the best collaborative Air Max 1 ever.
That said, when it comes to top-tier Air Maxes, the experts at Patta know exactly what they’re doing. The initial Amsterdam edition (utilising the skills of Dutch illustration master, Parra) turned a lot of heads when it dropped in 2005, and over the years they’ve kept the momentum going. Their 5th anniverdsary saw four more great AM1s released into the wild, this time keeping things a little more mellow on the colour palette but opting for a very nice denim material throughout all four shoes. When they brought back Parra for their fifth Air Max 1, that sealed the deal: the Patta guys are the ones to go to when you want to polish a gem. High value shoes come and go from our collections, usually dictated by erratic finances and everyday necessities, but the green denim ‘Chlorophyll’ Air Max 1s are one model that won’t ever leave the ‘essentials’ pile. A perfect shoe for the summer months, this Air Max from 2009 reminded everyone just how good green trainers could look.
Whilst we’re putting these two editions (carefully) back on the shoe racks, we’re looking forwards to celebrating the birth of the Air Max this Wednesday 26th March. Knowing the guys in Oregon, we expect NIKE AIR MAX DAY to be something rather special indeed. And you can whet your appetite and join in the fun by grabbing a pair of the celebratory AIR MAX DAY special edition NIKE AIR MAX 1 PREMIUM QS Editions via the link-through to the RELEASE PAGE below.
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