Nike is thinking about women’s sneakers differently, and a big proof point of that includes today’s U.S. and U.K. digital launch of Nike Unlaced, what will be a global dot-com destination where women can find a thoughtful selection of footwear, inclusive of expanded sizes, high-performance styles and exciting collaborations.
The selection of product on Nike Unlaced will be updated as often as weekly, beginning with a week of Nike Air Max styles, including new and limited colorways of the Air Max 97, Air VaporMax, Air Max 270 and more, to celebrate Air Max Day 2018.
In addition to these types of seasonal assortments, Nike teamed up with creatives and athletes known for their fashion and sneaker authority to determine the styles, colors and silhouettes that will make up a portion of the offerings. These experts will be featured in weekly stories, profiles or photo diaries on sneaker style and culture as well as how-to-wear tutorials. And every month, one of them will reveal a customized shoe they worked on with Nike designers (limited units will be available for purchase) and offer customization ideas.
“This is all about inclusion, so that women can feel like they can wear different styles, such as a men’s sneaker,” says European stylist (and self-proclaimed Air Max addict) Julia Sarr-Jamois, who worked closely with Nike to select sneakers that will filter in for the first six weeks of Nike Unlaced’s digital shop launch. “I wanted to balance fun, a bit of classic and new silhouettes — and to encourage people to understand that there are no rules. I’ll wear a running shoe with a normal outfit, not to run in. And I think that's really exciting.”
Here’s a first look at the types of shoes that will populate Nike Unlaced’s digital shop beginning today:
EXAGGERATED AND CHUNKY
Expect to see large silhouettes (beginning with retro-future runners like the Air Max 95 and 97) and massive patterns with big logos (including the Air More Uptempo that launches in an eye-popping North America-exclusive colorway). “It's nice for women to be able to wear something that's not dainty,” says Sarr-Jamois. “The Uptempo is my favorite shoe, and I just love how huge it is."
Things that once felt pedestrian are now some of the fastest emerging trends in sneakers, such as “dad shoes” and white on white — but that doesn’t mean they’re cheesy or plain. “A glaring canvas it has its own power,” she explains. “And dad shoes are no longer taboo. In fact, they’re really cool." Expect to see more unisex shoes and white-out versions of Air Max models to the Nike Blazer Low.
Some silhouettes will include the opportunity to remove logos and change or add accessories (for example, the Air Max 1 patch can be removed or moved). “It’s about reinventing a classic, but rather than it just being a different colorway, there's a different detail…the tag is here, or the Swoosh has been moved and stuff like that,” she says.
Many sneakers featured will be pink, Sarr-Jamois’ favorite color. “But we are going to the edges of that and exploring how far we can take pink,” she says. Also included is the second drop of The 1s Reimagined, which take flooded looks ranging from bright blue to rich orange.
Nike Unlaced shop-in-shops within existing Nike stores will open in cities around the world beginning this summer, featuring local product curations by influential creatives and stylists.