NEW YORK ROUND-UP
It’s been crazy as a coconut here in NYC this week. The weather was unseasonably warm and the city seemed to respond, with bright smiles and good natured banter the order of the day. 65 degrees in the middle of February and you know the sale racks are full of down coats and duckboot Air Force 1s. We coulda cleaned up.
We like to think we came, we saw, we conquered, but the truth is, we came, we saw and we went away feeling uplifted – both by Nike’s unquenchable thirst for innovation and also for their knack of raising the bar. It’s a quixotic sensation, fueled by attending previous engagements of a similar nature. We have huge expectations when it comes to Nike announcements, and like Karl Malone, they never fail to deliver. It’s what they do. It’s why we love them as a company.
First off, the anticipation leading up to this event was huge. Despite our best intentions and late night shenanigans, we could not break down a single Nike staffer. We had no hints, no gossip and no chance of even a mild nod in the right direction. This was faintly annoying but all part of the game and only adds to the intrigue. Personally, we also had a vivid impression that what we were about to see was truly a monster ‘game’changer’…
It must be said that when Nike go big, they do it BIG! That means 300 media flown in from all over the world and a phenomenal investment in logisitics, presentation pizzazz and sheer manpower. It’s awesome to see a brand like Nike in full flight, and in this respect alone, they are in a league of their own. Who else has the resources and the willpower to set a new standard every other year or so? We can’t think of a brand in the footwear realm that is even remotely interested in upping the ante.
Now for the update on what we saw. Firstly the FlyKnit stuff is legit. Photos simply do not do justice to the intricacy of the knitted upper. You know Nike can make great shoes that weigh a few measly grams, and in the tradition of Sock Racer and MayFly amongst others, the brand has certainly added a new chapter to the LW story. From a decorative viewpoint, the FlyKnit shoes offer a myriad of potential colourways and introduces a new visual language to shoe design. Since these shoes are knitted (presumably with a CAD device of some kind), the possibilities are endless. There are no flat panels, no seams and it’s all wrapped up in a complex web of knots and knits. Think of it as a new entry in the Nike Woven lineage and you’re on the right track, but this is arguably so much more. It’s proper sports gear for doing sport in.
We all know that feeling of burning desire when it comes to seeing a dope shoe for the first time and when we saw the new HTM Trainer edition in white/black and volt yellow threads, it was a lock – these FlyKnits had to be owned! Sober analysis the morning after revealed the shoe is definitely a grower. So many fine details and with the Lunar-tech in the sole, it’s a tidy package with enough twists and tweaks to instigate a new franchise. Will the general population rise to the beauty of the FlyKnit? Hard to say. It is sport. Its delicate beauty is proof that less is well and truly more. In summary, FlyKNit is not AIR, or Shox, or any of the other outrageous Nike innovations. Its subtlelty demands that time and attention be taken to unlock its secret. We look forward to seeing what comes next.
NYC : FEB 24 : 2012
Ok, so here’s the scoop! We have a new TURBOSPEED suit that is an evolution of Cathy Freeman’s medal-winning suit from Sydney, a new lunar HYPERDUNK basketball shoe and the introduction of the FlyKnit racer, which is made from recycled bottles amongst other things. FlyKnit has major potential… mad shoe with some very cool new innovations. Interesting to see just how light it is!
This afternoon we’ll have pics of the HTM (Mark Parker, Tinker Hatfield and Hiroshi Fujiwara). version of the FlyKnit. Stand by…. more pics added hourly.