The past few weeks have seen a sudden re-emergence of the Nike Air Force 1—something that no one saw coming. It all started when Nike announced that it had big plans for the Air Force 1 at ComplexCon. I have to admit, I was skeptical that the sneaker was going to make a huge impact in 2016. Consumers were talking about Yeezys, NMDs, and Ultra Boosts, and the Air Force 1 was traveling under the radar. Connoisseurs had picked up the archival or remastered Air Force 1s were sold over the past year or so. But the rest of the public was more concerned with getting the latest pair of Adidas sneakers than a re-issue of Bruce Kilgore’s 1982 masterpiece that has long stood as a cultural signifier for hip-hop fans, basketball purists, and anyone from Harlem. Somehow, though, Nike was able to change that tide with a bit of clever marketing. And the strangest of sneakers led the charge.

The Nike SF-AF1 is a hybrid between the Air Force 1 and the Special Field Boot, a piece of footwear designed for the military. It’s also one of the first shoes designed by Ben Kirschner, a Jordan Brand designer who moved over to Nike Basketball and works on lifestyle product. The white colorway of the shoe first released at ComplexCon and sold out. The Olive/Gum SF-AF1 has a current resale value of $457, according to StockX, while pairs have sold for as high as $550. But that was only the Genesis of the Air Force 1 revival. Nike had bigger plans.

It started with the brand going into a partnership with Stadium Goods at ComplexCon to sell 100 different Air Force 1s for the sneaker’s original price of $89. Grails such as the “Black Album,” “Entourage,” and “Stash” Air Force 1s were amongst the bundle, and they helped build a true energy around the product. This was followed up by the release of the VLONE x Nike Air Force 1, a collaboration with A$AP Bari, that, apparently, had people bidding up to $90,000 for the shoes on eBay. There was also the re-release of the “Los Angeles” Air Force 1, which made a lot of older sneakerheads smile and reminisce.

Source: Complex Sneakers

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