This week has been rife with sneaker news: The YEEZY Boost 350 V2 Black Reflective hit Yeezy Supply; images of Virgil Abloh’s bright-orange Louis Vuitton capsule collection for his “Figures of Speech” exhibition at the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art surfaced on WWD around the same time we got a first look at the Air Force 1s made for the same show; the world saw Maison Margiela’s deconstructed “Bubblegum Mix” Fusion Lows for the first time. One could go on, but why bother when there’s an emotional favorite dropping on UNKNWN this week? Nike’s Air Fear of God 1—a collaboration with L.A.-based streetwear label Fear of God—has been in the mix for a bit now. But now the line is now offering a version that is so wonderfully minimal, so tuned for summer, and speaks so well to the childhood obsessions of certain Surface editors, that it’s become a good candidate for our shoe of the season.
The Air Fear of God 1 “Summer Sail” is almost exactly what it says it is—a take on the familiar heel and strapping with a TPU lacing system inspired by the Air Huarache Light, and an off-white mesh upper in Nike’s “Sail” colorway offering a light, breathable option for the hot months.
But Fear of God designer Jerry Lorenzo has done so much more than create a kick for the season with this, his seventh collaboration with Nike—he’s accidentally reached back into a least a few treasured memories of the staff here.
Let’s be honest, other than the Imperial Guards, there was no one dressed better in the extended Star Wars universe than the Snowtroopers. Seriously, look. That’s some Margiela-level stuff right there and if ever one of these turned-out winter foot soldiers of the Empire were to get off Hoth and hit, say, the simmering August streets of lower Manhattan, the only lightweight kick that would work with their look would be those creamy white Air Fear of God 1s.
Sure, Nike is also releasing the shoe in some admittedly hot day-glow colorways. Have at ‘em if that’s your thing. But on this one we’re with Lorenzo who expressed his feelings on the natural-toned beauties via Instagram this week. “I love all my children equally, but this one has his own room in my heart… the best version of our original idea. A nod to summers in the hood when all you needed was crispy white nikes to set off any fit or hit the court…where fashion and sport collide without compromise.”
The Nike Air Fear of God 1 “Summer Sail” is available at UNKNWN for $350 June 8.