Photos courtesy of Nike Inc. & @nikesbornothing
Verdy dunk low
Beautiful shoe, but we’ve seen this with the ruby red slippers. Conceptually it’s nothing new, but the awesome hit on the heel cup. Emroidered. Yommmp! If I could source a pair, they’d go great with my Uniqlo x Verdy collab “Break the Mold” hoodie.
Night of Mischief dunk low (trick or treat)
Fun change of pace, I liked how loud they were (and explicitly were made to be rocked in october only). A great shoe, glows in the dark, nicely embroiered, and has a jack’o’lantern holes on the toe box as opposed to the traditional spacing. Subtle details.
Blazer low (top right)
easy pass for me.
OSKI dunk high
I could rap about these all day, not only is Oski a beast..these are FIRE!! Great quality materials, fun design, refreshing change from the typical swoosh. I would be curious to see what a sample would look like with a black sole, or maybe even a deep (blood in water) icy clear w/some dark red? regardless, as it, they look amazing. I usually am not a fan of white midsole/white sole, but these look meant to be.
*in the running for best dunk high of 2019
LA to CHI
Okay, you probably expect me to skeet over these, huh? Well, I sold my pair and bought regular SB’s (although I sold when my pair was fetching $450ish, they climbed up to $900>. Great idea, but the purple and red underneath doesn’t make the reveal as aesthetically pleasing as seen on Lance Mountain AJ1SB high, or even the KB YKWTFGO joints. Those colors just work better. With that being said, beautiful shoe, I’d scoop a pair at retail (again) if I could. But, that’s never going to happen. I got rid of these because at the end of the day, I’m a dunk guy.
NYC to Paris
Ugh. Similar to the LA to CHI, these could’ve been executed better IMHO if they had a better color either on top, or underneath. I get it wouldn’t be the NYC to Paris, but I’m here for shoes I want to cherish forever. Not just buying to buying. Y’all drop stuff every weekend, dropping two at once was rough as it is. I sold my pair at cost to my friend who collects to do an art project on them with acetone.
Polar Blazer low (bottom left)
Yes, please. This is an amazing spring/summertime shoe. Great durability, and nice color scheme on them. Versatile and goes with almost any outfit. This is a double up for me personally, which works out for the best because they weren’t eaten up by hypebeasts.
Polar Air Trainer (bottom right)
These are cool, BUT, at the end of the day I don’t know a single skater who could honestly say they prefer this silhouette to skate in. It’s a great shoe, might not serve the best function to skate in, unless you’re cruising, but still..I’d scoop. Some fresh ass baggy gray sweat pants and a blue/black hoodie. Fitted.
NONE OF THESE ARE IN THE RUNNING FOR SHOE OF THE YEAR IN MY BOOK, YOU HEARD ME?! The Jordans are great, but I can live without em.
Panda Pigeon dunk low / Jeff Staple (top left)
This aint no one hit wonder like that one dude rapping “panda” trying to sound like Future. This is Jeff fucking Staple. I love that staying true to the originaly colorways bold colorblocking was a non-negotiable, or at least it seems like it was. Simple but being original, in all of his pigeon series. Translucent soles w/graphics inside was an excellent touch. Definitely in the running for dunk of the year.
Black Sheep “black hornet” dunk high (top right)
Aiiight, imma head out. No disrespect but this is about sports teams at this point. If it’s not sacramento kings, or boston celtics colorway I don’t want it. If these weren’t attached to a basketball team I’d have gladly kept a pair. They’re fun and remind me of what I think a poop fly eyes look like. These were an easy pass for me.
Frog blazer (bottom left)
Well, they’re interesting, I’ll give them that. I am all about wild shoes, these were almost wild, but didn’t fill my need. I got rid of my pair. I liked the lady bugs on the alternative laces, it was a cool concept but it didn’t translate well when laced IMHO. I think a pinkish, tongue colored lace could work well, or a green lace that matches the swoosh, or a lace matching the frog itself. Just food for thought.
Dog walker dunk high (bottom right)
OH F$@K YES. “And the hammer hits the head”. Signed, sealed, delivered. YOU KNOW THE F*CKING VIBES. As you can tell, I was feeling these. From extra hang tag keychain thingy, to the alternative laces (brown) coming in a dog poop baggie (that had nike sb branding). Icy soles, with the exception of the [fake] poop smudge on sole. I couldn’t be more happy with this drop, I wish I doubled up. Definitely in the running for dunk of the year.
Matriz Skateshop Stefan low (top left)
Functionality, yes. Especially if you’re a fan of laceless skate shoes. As far as steez level goes, Imma pass on em. In hand they’re nice, but to me it reminds me of wearing Bape. Nothing against Bape either, it just ain’t for me.
Nike SB AJ1 low (top right)
Okay, I usually don’t care for Jordan 1 lows BUT these go. Super wearable colorway, versatility is good for an everyday wear. Skates well. I dig the extra little jumpman on the toebox too. Might not be a frontrunner for dunk of the year but it’s definitely one of the most wearbale.
Piet Parra Dunk low and Blazer low (bottom left/bottom right)
Yes and yes. No brainer. Simple? yeah. Loud? yeah. Still somehow subtle? YUUUUP. These were a real nice treat to unbox, fun alternative laces, wild tags, cool embroidery on heels, funky sock liner, cool insoles. This release definitely makes it in the top dunks of the year in my opinon. The blazer, not being a dunk, is still a very well executed shoe, in its own category I consider it a frontrunner as well.
TrAvIs ScOtT BlAzEr (top left)
Do I love brown, black, and white? yes, how about crimson red hits and alternative laces? You betcha. I can’t comfortably wear these now in fear I will be seen as an inferior hypebeast on my college campus. (sike). I love these, pretty wearable colorway, I like you can make them go 0-100 with the lace swap. Definitely worth scooping a pair. Not a “best of” in my book, but still worthy of the purchase.
Pipe bag dunk low (top right)
Looky here, you can call these whatever you want, or whatever Nike claims them to be called. These are the pipe bag dunks. These materials take me back to my high school days when I scored my first pipe. I bought a Vatra bag for it and it had a courduroy material outside and was SUPER puffy. Long story short, thats what these are to me. A pipe bag butchered into a dunk. Therefore, these were a MANDATORY SNATCH! Double up would’ve been nice but my local sold out of the other 10 and 10.5 before I could come back. Not quite a heavy hitter to be considered a dunk of the year, but it’s definitely a well-done, wearable, fun release that’ll be appreciated for years to come.
Orange Label blazer high (bottom left)
That parachute material/deconstructed tongue gotta go, fam. Alright? Idk if its cost effective, or good for the environment, but that sh*t is getting old. It doesn’t age with the shoe, I realize most Swoosh employees don’t wear their shoes long enough to run into this problem. But, us lamen have to make them last. When it’s a leather upper like this it helps, because the leather is relatively easy to keep white. However suede and canvas that feature this material tongue fade/age at a rate when by comparison they’ll look older/beat quicker than they should. As a seller, great. As a consumer, not so great. Well done blazer, but won’t make it into my closet.
LA to CHI
Already did this one above, I blended to posts from @nikesbornothing into one on here. Get over it.
Supreme dunk low(s) (all three pairs on the left)
Well, I only like one of the three. Red/white. Second, Blue/gold, then Black/silver. If I were a Raiders fan I’d be all over em. After seeing creative, iconic, long-appreciated dunks produced by Supreme, these were a huge let down. It’s not enough Supreme uses the worst silohuettes to prove a point, their consumers will wear ANYTHING they brand with their logo..Supreme held off doing another dunk for this long only to give us the laziest excuse of a dunk. Two tone, stupid star on heel, supreme in what looks like bootleg ass quality. I even heard some pairs had misspelled embroidery jobs (lol). Needless to say, these aren’t making the cut for dunk of the year
Ben G dunk low (top right)
Hear me out.. we make some of the small swooshes embroidered green, or even painted if embroidered is too costly in production. NEXT instead of having a normal sized swoosh, why not emboss it too? The upper is a little simple. Very cool materials, and concept. I kept the clothes from this release but ditched the kicks.
FPAR dunk high (bottom right)
If I wanted some boring shoes I’d buy Sketchers (sorry David Ortiz). I’m serious, you somehow as a compnay with little brand recognition, manage to land a Nike SB collaboration…and you choose two of the arguably most boring colors I’ve ever seen on a shoe AND MANAGE to put the most emo-ass quotes on the swooshes. Jordan brand doesn’t branch out because of boof like this. Litreally any other colorway could’ve made this drop smack.
Verdy dunk low (top left) – already went over this, if you don’t remember that you’re burnt.
Gnarhunters (top right) – cool, simple, wearable. Bought em, but they’re not the best blazer done this year.
AJ1 low (UNC cw) x Eric Koston (it aint his colorway)
Look, I like Koston, I like AJ1, but yall can’t just copy and paste each others homework and not expect us to feel like dummies about accepting it. It’s a fire shoe. I bought them and love them. But when I look down I see UNC not a “Eric Koston” colorway.
VIOLENT FEMMES STEFAN
Ahhhh yes, memory lane..there you are. I love the Violent Femmes. I don’t expect people who didn’t experience them at their pinnacle of success to understand their style. It’s whiny, it’s catchy, it’s funny, it’s bad ass. I love the band a lot so these were a no brainer for me. I know they’re now on sale for half price, and I paid full P..but hell, at least I got ’em.
Say less, pearlescent mini swoosh, white sole with red letters on it, snakesking uppers?! Yeah, I got love for these. I didn’t end up scooping a pair, but have access to them. I’m a fan of wild/loud shoes, but I just fail to pull off snakeskin anything. I’d grab them just to look at them to be honest. Well done, and in my opinion one of the coolest blazers all year.
Lance Mountain x AJ1 low
First he gave us painted 1 highs, now we’ve got tear-away lows. I’m hyped on this one. Although I’ve seen a lot of people already try to cut their fabric off, the end product doesn’t look right. The way the fabric adheres to the uppers makes me think youd need to soak certain parts with alcohol or something to loosen parts of it (excluding the border) if you wanted to fray it and go with a cheech&chong dunk high approach to it. What’s cool? When these are actually skated, they wear down super cool. Granted most of the hands that got that drop weren’t people who would ever skate them, it’s good to know the best pairs are on the feet of people who actually skate.
Last but certainly not least..
RAYGUNS HOME & AWAY [and toddler]
Prayers have been answered. This is a quality retro, with strong attachment to Nike SB culture. Sandy would be juiced on this pair. The tie die white is so faint, but so necessary, it just makes the shoe so subdued yet eye-grabbing. Quality on both pairs are incredible. I was fortunate enough to be held down by my familia on both pairs 💯. These will be on my feet in no time, both pairs.
*Sidenote, the baby sized shoes go SO hard; I pray Nike does this moving forward. They make money delievering a good WE REALLY WANT, it’s a double-backscratch. Lets make this happen 2020.