35 Years of the Acclaimed Air Jordan 3
2023 marks the 35th anniversary of the Air Jordan 3; a staple silhouette that’s defined sneaker and basketball culture. With its long-standing icon status as one of the greatest models of all time, we’re dissecting the key elements that differentiate the Air Jordan 3 from its predecessor and its cultural impact on the lauded franchise.
First created in 1988 by sneaker deity Tinker Hatfield, the AJ3 was built in close collaboration with Michael Jordan in response to the player's desire for a lighter, more modern shoe. The design broke the mold with its innovation, Swoosh-less sidewalls, and was also the first to feature a visible Air unit in the heel. In addition to being the third in line to the Jordan dynasty, it was also the first mid-cut basketball shoe that adorned the courts.
Following its predecessor, the sneaker did away with the large Swoosh and introduced the Jumpman logo to the lineage. Sat atop the tongue, this iconic silhouette of his ‘Airness’ dunking replaced the renowned ‘Wings’ logo ushering in a new era of trainers. This insignia went on to decorate every model since, making it one of the most easily recognisable cultural symbols around the globe.
But one of the features that really made these shoes so iconic, was its silhouette-defining elephant print that informed the uppers. It added a touch of luxe to the sneaker, and since then the print has appeared on a number of the label's apparel and shoes too - confirming its status as a lifestyle brand and historical impact of the Air Jordan 3.
Keep your eyes peeled for more Air Jordan 3 releases this year and shop the Jordan label at size? now.