Air Force 1

An all-time classic, the Air Force 1 was designed by Bruce Kilgore and was originally released as a high top in 1982.


The name “Air Force 1” was inspired by the US Presidents jet.

The “Air Force 1” was the first basketball shoe to feature “Nike Air Technology” for unmistakable comfort, a cup sole for unmatched du-rability, and threaded outsole to allow better movement on the basket-ball court. The design was inspired by the “Nike Approach Hiking Boot”.

The Air Force 1 was the reason Tinker Hatfield decided to pursue a ca-reer in sneaker designs rather than architecture, after being gifted a pair and heavily impressed by the sneaker.

In 1983, Nike introduces the Air Force 1 Low for the first time.

In 1984, Nike discontinued the AF1 to pursue other designs. However, three retailers in Baltimore known as “The Three Amigos”, convinced Nike to reconsider. Those retailers were Cinderella Shoes, Downtown Locker Room and Charley Rudo Sports. Air Force 1s were re-released in 1986, with the modern italic Nike logo featured on a Swoosh, both on the sole and on the heel of the shoe. Each retailer was made to take 1,200 pairs of the White/Royal Blue colourway, and 1,200 pairs of the White/Chocolate Brown colourway. Both colourways sold out. With the success of the two new colourways, the “Colour of the Month Club” was born, and the Air Force 1 was reborn. This monthly sneaker event opened the doors to more exciting colourways and designs of the AF1, and encouraged people to buy and collect every colourway released.

Very little marketing was put into Nike’s Air Force 1, outside of the adverts that featured NBA stars such as Moses Malone and Mychal Thompson. Drug dealers and hustlers were the true style influencers of their era. As the crack epidemic tore apart East Coast inner cities from between 1984 to 1993, there was plenty of cash to be spent. Dealers’ pristine shoes, ostentatious cars, and oversized jewellery set a new standard of aspiration. Retailing at $80 a pair, the Air Force 1s infec-tious style made its way along Interstate 95 to D.C. and New York.