Please No More Off White In 2019

Please, No More Off-White in 2019

Date: January 15 2019

By: Gabe Filippa


On October 17, 2017, Virgil Abloh dropped his first design as part of ‘The Ten’ collection.Taking the scalpel to a sanctified silhouette, Virgil and his Off-White label attempted to remix a sneaker that, for most of us, had always travelled the shortest distance between the heart and the sole: the Air Jordan 1

The verdict? 


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Off-White x Air Jordan 1

Virgil’s Chicago-inspired Off-White x Nike Air Jordan 1 knocked it out of the ballpark, combining careful deconstruction and a playful reverence to become one of the most successful Air Jordan treatments of all time. Virgil quickly followed up with more heavy-hitters from Nike’s arsenal, releasing the Air Force 1 and Air Max 90, all to critical and commercial acclaim. The sneaker community was whipped into a frenzy. 

Off-White were on fire. 

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Fast forward to 2019; in the past two months, Off-White have double-dropped more Zoom Flys and Air Max 90s, revealed leather slides, double-dropped Air Force 1 Lows, reissued the Blazer ‘Spooky Pack’, threw down toddler versions of the UNC Air Jordan 1,  Air Force 1 and Air Max 90, whipped out jelly sandals, and perhaps the nastiest sneaker of 2019.

Virgil Abloh once billed Off-White as a brand with the kind of philosophical stylings needed to disrupt the sneaker marketplace; a label looking to 'add an intellectual layer' to streetwear. For Virgil, streetwear had become ‘cheap’, a prescient remark that, ironically, became a kind of prophetic self-diagnoses for his own brand.

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Repetition, imitation, appropriation; Off-White’s endless stream of releases in 2018 created a rampant and insane production line of zip-ties and quotation marks. Any starry-eyed intellectualism regarding the role of fashion for Off-White was quickly zapped by the great corruptor of integrity: money. 

If you’re prying open a discourse on art and fashion, it may not be necessary to constantly evolve, digress or implode; but if you’ve got nothing to say, say nothing. Leave it to other voices to attempt to render the contours of the world, rather than constantly installing quotation marks around it. We were desperate for new voices in 2018, but continued to hear the same maddening frequencies over and over again, a limited tonal range, picked up by consumers, and amped by major in-house sneaker designers cashing in on the trend.

For a man that travels over 350,000 miles a year, Virgil Abloh and Off-White continue to see the world only in black and white stripes.

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