Innovation has always been at the forefront of Nike’s footwear, and the introduction of their N. 354 line is the brand’s latest venture to showcase their experimental nature. Kicking off the series with two silhouettes, the Oregon-based brand deconstructs the Air Force 1 and debuts an all-new style in the Drop Type LX.
Nike’s archives feature a heap of prototypes, each of which signalling an attempt to solve a pesky problem faced by athletes. The N. 354 collection draws influence from this catalogue and merges the past, present and future of footwear to birth boundary-pushing innovations. One of which is the Air Force 1 Low Type silhouette.
Up top, the pair’s medial side sports a semi-translucent TPE skin – similar to that of the React Element 87 – highlighting the unique closure system underneath. This tech sits at the back of the b-ball classic, a large Velcro strap wraps around the heel, locking your foot firmly in place for a supportive fit.
Taped seams sit on the lateral side, with N. 354 branding sits below in place of the usual Swooshing. What’s more, a comfy metallic blue cushioned tongue offers something a little bit different, plus the model’s rubber toe-bumper extends from the midsole on to the toe-box to offer added protection. Like all Air Force 1 releases previous, this Type iteration retains the Air technology within the midsole, powerfully cushioning your every stride.
The Drop Type LX boasts a similar concept-influenced design. Borrowing design cues from the NikeCourt family – namely the All Court 2 – the low-riding trainer strips a traditional tennis shoe down to the core, rebuilding it with a cut-and-paste feel. A mix of materials builds the uppers, and just like the Air Force 1 Type, the vulcanised sole unit works its way up onto the uppers for heightened durability.
Below, the pair’s vulcanised sole unit boasts the same ‘autoclave’ construction as the Nike Blazer. This means the shoe is baked at soaring temperature to fuse the sole unit to the upper for added strength and durability. An exposed foam tongue finishes the Drop Type LX, furthering the vintage-inspired styling.
The Nike N. 354 Series Air Force 1 Low Type and Drop Type LX will be available via the size? website and in selected size? stores on Monday 15th July, priced between £70 – £120 and available in both men’s and women’s sizes.