snapshots and observations

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

nike air force 1 ( year of the dragon edition )

for the 7th year out of the past 10, nike released an air force 1
to commemorate the chinese new year.

they dropped in a very limited edition just over a week ago at 10am... 
i picked up mine at 10.30am
1948 is the top place for nike in the uk. not only is it a fantastic space
with friendly staff, but the extra touches are very nice too.
there's usually a free magazine or two to pick up and when you buy something
it comes packaged in a quality cotton tote bag.

the year of the dragon af-1's come in a decent box this year
it's like a pull-out drawer. 

the box comes with a clear plastic outer sleeve
with a dragon detail printed in black

so far so good
but what are the shoes like ?

they are pretty sweet... but i think they could have been better

let's take a closer look
the tip, the toe box, the eye stay, the mid panel the foxing, the tongue and the heel strip
are all finished in a black chinese silk with a dragon motif woven into it.

the swoosh is constructed from a material which i guess is supposed to
represent dragon scales
here you can see a bit of the pattern on the mid panel. 
hmmm... maybe not all the pattern is of a dragon ?

here's a shot of the foxing
the pattern on the silk is different on each shoe by the way.

as you can see from this shot of the tip, the pattern is quite subtle.
from a distance these just look like plain black af-1's

i'm not sure about using silk as a material. i'm very much a fan of leather af-1's
and in my whole crate i only have two pairs of suede af-1's and the one pair which
feature harris tweed
 i do think it looks good, i just have doubts about how it will wear.

oh i nearly forgot to mention... the shoes have black metal eyelets, black
waxed laces with silver tips...
and very swish silver dubres with xxx on them, white on white.

the heel tabs are nice. you know by now that i'm not a fan of having 'nike' 'air' and a 
swoosh on my heel tabs... i like to have them either blank or with something else.
these bad boys have leather heel tabs with a chinese symbol stitched onto them
( i'm guessing the symbol says 'dragon' )

i'm also not a fan of 'nike' 'air' or a swoosh on the tongue tabs either so...
... nice one nike... a very impressive embroidered dragon using a variety of colours
which really makes it stand out against all the black

another nice use of bright colours is on the insoles
black sock liners but bright colourful insoles. very tidy.

now to my least favourite part...
ok they have a leather wrap midsole, which gives them another boost of quality
but in my opinion the bright white is a bit much.
especially when teamed with a white outsole

grrr !
i can hardly bring myself to publish this pic
bright white mid and outsoles... once again, grrr !

so what are my ideas for a better year of the dragon ?

i would have liked to have seen the top eyelet on each shoe in a different colour to black.
just choose any of the colours featured on the insoles ( pale blue, yellow or red ) 
and i reckon they would have that extra bit of style... look that little bit more special.

although i'm not a fan of white midsoles, the fact that it's leather is very nice,
personally though i think these are screaming out for a different outsole.
either the predictable 'mayor-style' gum out or why not use a colour featured
on the insole again ? imagine these as they are but with white midsoles and say a 
pale blue outsole... or red... or yellow ?
imagine a yellow outsole but with the two circles on each shoe in red...
maybe keeping it simpler, just a plain black outsole would finish them off
nicely without being too garish ?

let me know what you think of these. what you think of my 'improvements'
or how you would improve them.

happy new year !


  1. These are ridiculous! The year of the rabbit and the year of the dragon AF-1s are both clean.


  2. but what about the white outsole paul ?

  3. Hi!
    Are amazing!
    Perhaps in the sole a dragoon that it iluminates(neon) when the night falls so is my year.
    i love them!

  4. good call harmy. a dragon design on the sole would have been nice. especially using glow-in-the-dark technology.

  5. I have two feelings about the white outsole. 1. I love how the White signifies purity and gives the shoe the clean look. 2. It is impractical because white outsoles are going to get be tainted no matter what you do when you wear them. I dislike white outsoles by reason of number 2 but love them because of number 1. So it brings me to confront an issue in my self to detach emotional attachment from perfection and just wear em like they are supposed to be worn.

    I know its probably too deep but thats my take on the white outsoles. Haha
    Color additions would be better tho.


  6. I just think there is too much white.
    even a clear, ice sole would be that sweet little
    improvement that would lift these up a notch
    without being so loud as say a red or yellow

  7. Where did you get these from ?
    Or do you think they would have all gone ?

  8. I bought these from 1948 in london.
    they sold out in a couple of hours.

    I think ebay is your only option now.