More than three decades have passed since the iconic Nike Air Jordan brand moved beyond basketball shoes to introduced athletic and casual apparel. In 1985, Air Jordan released the Flight Suit, which was marketed as casual wear but was actually fashioned in such a way that it could only be worn on the court as warm-up attire.
The new Air Jordan fall collection for 2017 is clearly going in a different direction. The designers have paid attention to what customers preferred in previous collections, which was mostly simpler designs as well as flat black and white colors, to design a new apparel line that is subdued, sharp and stylish. This means departing from the traditional red of the Air Jordan brand, which is closely associated with the colors of the Chicago Bulls NBA uniform, but the new focus on black and white seems to resonating among fans of this athletic wear brand.
At the collection’s launch event, minimalism and the modern design that was last seen during the 1980s were clearly on display. First of all, the news conference was held in California mansion designed in the modernist architectural style; the interior was arranged like an art gallery and there were throwback motifs to be found everywhere. It is important to remember that when Michael Jordan was a rookie in the NBA, minimalism and clean lines were among the prevalent aesthetics. To this effect, Nike parked a boxy, black and white 1980s Ferrari Testarossa in the garage of the mansion, this was the first luxury car that Jordan acquired after signing a major contract.
The new Air Jordan line is subdued. Bomber jackets are slightly puffy but very sharp; the same can be said of the fleece suits and hoodies. The basketball shoes are monochrome and subdued. The designers have incorporated subtle throwback hints such as the wings of the original Air Jordan logo and a few stripes. In terms of materials and technology, Nike never disappoints in this department; the fabric of the warm-up suits adjusts to any climate and physical activity. The highlights of the collection include the coach jacket and the black Air Jordan shoes, which are designed to fit snuggly and feature an advanced velcro system instead of shoelaces.
Fans of stylish streetwear will have to wait a couple of months for the collection to debut at Nike stores; in the meantime, they can see the garments online at nike.com or on the websites of popular fashion bloggers.