ARTICLE BY Boon Mark Souphanh

A Brief History of the Nike SB Dunk Low ‘London’

Nike Dunk Low Sb London on white
Via Cheng Ortaleza/@senyorcheng

By now, most of you are well-aware that not all Dunks are created equal. When it comes to the most storied Nike SB Grails, the brand’s formative years are littered with lesser-known gems, with jaw-dropping secondary market price tags. These are the pairs that lit the spark for the rapid ascension of Nike’s skate subdivision which, as we all know, went on to shape modern sneaker culture. One such release was the Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’, a colourway many contemporary crep fans may have never heard of until Sneaker Freaker’s Olympic sneaker bracket.

Nevertheless, the sought-after SB Dunk Low remains one of the rarest sneakers in the world, and an ever-elusive acquisition for crazed collectors. With over 15 years passing since its fabled release, this ‘London’ was calling for its story to be re-told once again.

Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white
Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white
,Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white
Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white

A member of the OG City Series, the ‘London’ colourway was just one of four storied releases from the coveted 2004 collection. Complementing the ‘Tokyo’, ‘Paris’ and the ‘NYC Pigeon’, the ‘London’ was scheduled to release at an infamous event that never happened: the White Dunk: Evolution of an Icon art exhibition. Following subsequent events in Paris and Tokyo, the London stop never actually took place, contrary to popular belief. Nike opted for a different approach for the City Series’ third instalment, after previous releases were marred by controversy.

Consequently, 202 pairs were eventually sold through local retailer Foot Patrol. So, with such limited units, and such a cool backstory, you can see why pairs continue to demand such hefty prices.

Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white
Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white
Nike SB Dunk Low Pro ‘London’ on white

Unlike the aforementioned ‘Paris’ colourway, the ‘London’ contrasts its extravagant price tag with a refreshingly minimal design, dressed in a combination of ‘Soft Grey’ and ‘Magnet’.

A nod to London’s cloudy skies, the sneaker keeps the details and colours muted, with a distinct embroidered line on the lateral side the only notable decoration. But it’s not just a random squiggle, the line represents the River Thames, the famed 200-mile waterway that passes through London. The river is nicknamed ‘Liquid History’, so it’s only fitting this Dunk has found its way into the pantheon of SB royalty. Arriving in the era’s famed Silver Box, every pair can be customised with either grey or navy laces.

So, how much will a pair set you back in nowadays? About $30,000 – give or take.

For a look at the most expensive SB Dunks of all time, head here.

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