Nike's Air Force 1 silhouette has remained a constant across fashion since its original launch in 1982, transitioning from basketball equipment to a global streetwear staple. Every generation that has adopted the shoe within their style has played an integral part in creating and maintaining its legacy in a personal way.
Stories of New York's unwavering support for the shoe are countless, and other cities' relationships and cultural connections to the Air Force 1 are no exception. During the late '90s, London maintained a strict underground following of the Air Force 1 prior to its embrace of fashion, music, and celebrity. During this period, the shoe appeal was wholly organic, being adopted and definitively styled by the streets.
JD Sports played a pivotal role in the growing success of the Air Force 1 in London during the early 2000s, through their release of exclusive colourways that gained a cult following, with U.S stores and consumers importing styles from the UK. Over time, the shoe's status continued to grow, with the AF1 Carnival acting as a true reflection of London culture. Most recently, however, was Samuel Ross' A Cold Wall* take on the shoe that paid homage to the architecture of the city.
Nike looked to four contemporary Londoners to share their individual perspectives on the Air Force 1 and its legacy in London, with AJ Tracey commenting on how highly the city regards the shoe: "You could be going somewhere nice — to the club, for example — and wear a nice shirt, smart trousers and then instead of formal shoes, you would wear a pair of fresh pair of Air Force 1."
Head over the Nike for more information, and each Londoner's take on the significance of the AF1 to the city.