Born more than 30 years ago to provide dependable protection and performance in all conditions, Nike ACG is reborn as NikeLab ACG in 2014 to deliver sport utility for the city. Spanning outerwear, footwear and portable storage, the collection is designed to meet the demands for mobility and weather protection in any urban setting.
Representing the future of sport style innovation, ACG marries pioneering materials such as Nike Tech Fleece, Nike Dri-FIT Wool and Nike Flyknit with the Berlin-based designer Errolson Hugh’s knowledge of fit, apparel construction and the functionality needed for everyday life. Hugh is the co-founder of Acronym®, an independent design agency focused on the unification of style and technology in apparel. Working together, Hugh and Nike designers reassessed contemporary athletic needs by challenging convention. Through mutual learning, the team created elegant solutions for complex problems.
“Our question was, what can we build with ACG that no one else can build?” Hugh says. “How do we ensure, beyond being technically superb, that this is distinctively Nike? We came back to athleticism, and the athlete being at Nike's core. Setting the athlete down in the center of the urban landscape really brought it all home for us.”
All Conditions Fit
For the ACG collection, Hugh and the Nike design team developed the “all conditions fit,” a structure built to encourage readiness, both mentally and physically, and minimize restriction.
“Specifically looking at athletes, there’s a stance that’s universal to all sports. In martial arts it’s often called the ‘ready’ or ‘neutral’ stance, and it’s a precursor to just about any type of movement,” says Hugh, a martial arts enthusiast. “Your center of gravity is neutral, but it’s dropped. Your ankles, knees and elbows are bent. You’re in a kind of half-crouch, but you’re looking forwards.”
The team then developed the fit block based on this stance. The fit block is akin to a chassis in a car. It is the foundation on which everything is built.
“For ACG, we drafted the fit block with that posture rather than the typical straight-limbed static one,” Hugh says. “Readiness is physically encoded into the silhouette of the collection. We call it the all conditions fit because it suggests the ability to transition to any movement and to any situation.”
Every detail in the collection was considered, from the range of motion a jacket or pants provide to the placement of pockets and their ability to store items such as cell phones, laptops and notebooks.
“We needed to ensure that the silhouette serves the needs of the urban athlete and, more importantly, that movement of the body is never restricted,” says Matthew Millward, Nike Senior Design Director. “Bulky items are hidden and kept close to the body, securely stowed. The head-to-toe look should always remain clean by keeping design lines continuous and simple.”
The Ultimate Landscape
For today’s athletes, the city is the ultimate landscape. It is a worthy maze, rife with modern obstacles. These include walking, biking, climbing stairs and jockeying for a cab. City microclimates are equally as diverse. Throughout the day, the typical urbanite navigates between crowded and humid subways, windy bridges, exposed streets, temperate work environments, and intimate and warm social settings. While the ACG collection protects against the most extreme wind and rain, it also offers flexibility to move between climates. The collection’s layering attributes allow the wearer to gear up or down to match the environment. For example, the wearer can easily remove or add the outer shell of the NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men’s Jacket.
“The collection considers the way individuals interact and pass through a city for their day-to-day business,” Millward says. “It’s also designed to protect these individuals from every type of weather.”
Form Meets Function
The utilitarian premise of the collection demands that each piece stand up as well flying across a bridge on a bicycle as it would aesthetically. Engineered around movement, the architectural silhouettes have an innate elegance. Paired with a dark color palette and reflective logos, the collection transitions between muted and more visible as needed.
“While we needed to make something that doesn't restrict your movement at all, we also didn’t want that to have any negative impact visually,” Hugh says. “It shouldn't look strange. It has to be presentable, civilized, stylish. But form is never divorced from function. It’s easy to make something look really good. It's very hard to make it look good and move well.”
The new collection enables the body in motion and conceals the tools of urban life to remain minimal, clean and architecturally sculpted. Movement and comfort are paramount.
The NikeLab ACG collection is available beginning Dec. 18 at nike.com/nikelab in North America, Western Europe and Japan. It will also be available at the following retail locations: NikeLab 21 Mercer NYC, NikeLab DSM NYC, Niketown New York, NikeLab 1948 LDN, NikeLab DSM LDN, NikeLab P75 Paris, NikeLab LNZ1 Milan and NikeLab DSM Ginza in Tokyo.
NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men's Jacket
The NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men’s Jacket has been painstakingly engineered for the athlete in the urban context who transitions between diverse activities throughout the day. It is the ultimate expression of the all conditions fit that underpins the ACG collection. Tailored to the ready stance, the jacket is roomy enough to move with the athlete’s body, helping the wearer navigate the city with zero distraction.
Employing a waterproof GORE-TEX® three-layer fabric, the NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men’s Jacket equips the wearer for the harsh elements of the city. It also features an integrated liner that can be worn alone. The liner and shell collars zip together at the neckline, an optimal connection point to make the two layers move and feel as one.
A storm collar includes a deployable hood designed to maintain structural stability even in the fiercest wind conditions. The jacket’s pockets are constructed as tools for everyday use, with an emphasis on maximized storage, ease of access, weather protection and security. Stacked chest pockets are connected via media ports, allowing the wearer to run his headphones underneath the lining of the jacket. With room for a wallet, phone or small notebook, these pockets keep valuables close to the body for security while creating a stealthy, architecturally sculpted aesthetic. The jacket also features reflective ACG graphics, helping the wearer remain visible in low-light conditions.
The NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men’s Jacket will also be available in a silver logo version, which is exclusive to nike.com/nikelab until Jan. 15.
NIKELAB ACG TECH FLEECE MEN’S PANT
The NikeLab ACG Tech Fleece Men’s Pant perfectly captures the athletic silhouette of the all conditions fit. Like the NikeLab ACG 2 in 1 Men’s Jacket, the fit of the ACG Tech Fleece Men’s Pant is born from the ready stance in sports. Minimal seams and articulation at both the front and the back of the knee help form a pant that can be worn without distraction.
The pant features Nike Tech Fleece material, which uses innovative thermal construction to trap body heat, creating warmth without adding weight. The pockets are optimally positioned for entry based on hand position and reach. There are two side pockets and two rear zippered pockets. The right-leg side pocket is dual entry, featuring a secondary pocket that drops into the back of the pant, deep enough for the wearer to store his keys without fear of them falling out. Despite the generous storage space, the pockets are designed in such a way that cargo does not disrupt the pant’s overall shape. The tapered legs foster a sophisticated, stealthy aesthetic without restricting the wearer’s movement.
NIKELAB ACG TECH FLEECE FUNNEL MEN’S SWEATSHIRT
The NikeLab ACG Tech Fleece Funnel Men’s Sweatshirt is a visually striking layering item with innovative details. It features a roll-neck design that can be used to cover the lower part of the face in cold weather. In the back of the neck, a bungee cord and stopper allow the wearer to make adjustments for a snug fit. The sleeves have an ergonomic fit that tapers at the wrist. On the lower left side of the garment, a zipper makes it easy to pull the garment on and off for simple layering. Nike Tech Fleece material offers the ultimate in lightweight warmth, using innovative thermal construction to help keep the athlete comfortable in cool conditions.
NIKELAB ACG POCKET MEN’S T-SHIRT
The NikeLab ACG Pocket Men’s T-Shirt incorporates a slightly dropped back hem for extra coverage when the wearer bends forward. Taped seams at the sides and around the square pocket create a sleek aesthetic. The tee employs Nike Dri-FIT Wool fabric, which is a blend of wool and polyester that provides warmth, breathability and mobility. Like all Dri-FIT material, it moves sweat away from the skin to help keep the wearer cool and comfortable. The bold ACG logo on the back of the shirt is reflective, helping the athlete remain visible in low-light conditions.
NIKELAB ACG FLYKNIT TRAINER CHUKKA SFB
The NikeLab ACG Flyknit Trainer Chukka SFB is an exceptionally comfortable and durable footwear solution designed to be worn for long stretches. Enhanced durability is delivered through several key features. A protective skin has been added to the toe and heel, and Defender Repellent Systems™ spray has been applied to the upper for all-over water resistance. In addition, the shoe features a rugged, Nike Free-inspired outsole with hard rubber in the toe and heel and sticky rubber on the forefoot for added traction. A synthetic wool yarn is double knitted into the lining, blending into the Nike Flyknit upper for added warmth and a soft feel. The sockliner is perforated for breathability and includes foam pads under the heel and forefoot for extra cushioning. As the foot moves, Nike dynamic Flywire loosens and tightens for an adaptive fit.
NIKELAB ACG LUNARTERRA ARKTOS
The NikeLab ACG LunarTerra Arktos updates from the original Nike LunarTerra Arktos boot, which released in October 2013. Like its predecessor, it combines the comfort of a sneaker with the insulation and weather protection of a winter boot. In an effort to make the boot lighter, Nike designers removed the internal bootie, a staple of the first version. This helps the athlete quickly navigate city streets. The outsole employs sticky rubber for improved traction. A new water-repellant (DWR) mesh in the upper aids flexibility and, combined with a leather vamp and heel, helps boots stay dry in damp conditions. Non-wicking laces work to prevent water absorption, and Nike dynamic Flywire loosens and tightens with movement for an adaptive fit. The thermal lining has grooves that work to store hot air, providing blanket-like warmth inside the boot. The Lunarlon midsole provides lightweight and plush cushioning.
The NikeLab ACG LunarTerra Arktos will be available exclusively in North America until Jan. 15, when it will expand its reach to Western Europe and Japan.
NIKELAB ACG RESPONDER BACKPACK
The NikeLab ACG Responder Backpack is an ultra-durable urban backpack designed to accommodate the constantly changing array of items needed for daily life in the city. Evolved from the military-inspired Nike SFS Responder Backpack, the NikeLab ACG Responder Backpack features the innovative Nike Quad Zip System. This x-shaped four-way zipper system provides supremely easy access; the wearer can quickly get to items anywhere inside the bag by unzipping individual sections as needed. The system also enables the athlete to completely open the bag and lay it flat for easy packing.
Interior pockets stow a range of large and small objects, from a 15-inch laptop to a pair of shoes. A pocket on the top of the backpack is lined with fleece materials to protect sunglasses or a cell phone. Removable MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) side pouches create even more storage options and utility straps at the base of the bag are engineered to cradle bulky items such as camera tripods or jackets.
The NikeLab ACG Responder Backpack’s body is made from a lightweight, strong and waterproof Dimension-Polyant® material, which provides durability for the city’s concrete landscape. Ergonomic shoulder straps work with a sternum strap and a stowable waist belt to help keep the wearer comfortable throughout even the busiest urban itineraries. The back panel and lining of the shoulder straps are constructed with Nike Hypervoid mesh, which promotes airflow against the body for increased breathability. Reflective ACG logos on the straps and front of the backpack help keep the athlete visible in low light conditions as he moves throughout the city.