“Have you hugged your foot today?”
This statement from the 1992 Nike Air Huarache ad was both a proposition and the articulation of Nike designer Tinker Hatfield’s study in minimalist functionality. The evolution of today’s Nike Air Huarache shoes, including the new Nike Air Huarache Ultra, continually expands upon the concise design philosophy of the original silhouette: “less is more.”
The design of the Nike Air Huarache Ultra focuses on comfort, flexibility, fit and ease of entry, resulting in a lighter shoe that still “hugs” the foot. It keeps elements of the iconic 1991 Huarache — the logo, bootie construction, heel stabilizer and dotted heel — while reimagining its exoskeleton-like qualities.
"We wanted to reimagine the Huarache in a fresh and modern way for the way our female consumer maneuvers today," says Nike footwear designer Ashley Comeaux of the Nike Air Huarache Ultra. “You get the shape of the original saddle and added Nike technology with the next generation Flywire lacing system. It’s simple and clean, yet the DNA of Huarache is still there."
The shoe retains the lateral and medial side of the original as rubber components, with a bigger brand read on the back done in stretch webbing.
The saddle is executed in molded detail as a nod to the original design and uses next generation Flywire cord to keep the mid-foot locked down and the fit component intact.
The midsole retains the expressive gesture of the original. The classic dotted pattern from the heel also serves as sidewall texture.
Only the tip and heel are rubber, in contrast to the completely rubber outsole of the original. The forefoot is cored-out for more flexibility.
The Nike Air Huarache Ultra will be available December 26 at nike.com/sportswear and select Nike Sportswear retailers.