Wednesday, July 2, 2008
July 1, 2008 will go down as one of the greatest days in sneaker history. After years of a Wildwood drought, a new pair has just been released. Part of the "Rainbow Scribble Pack" this pair has black and white suede and leather uppers with rainbow scribble over a black midsole. Features a mesh tongue with ACG stitched in gold.
For several months I've seen samples and catalog shots, but didn't hear of any release dates. Nike finally smartened up- Smarten Up Nike- and re-released one of the greatest sneakers ever designed. A stream lined runner with a rugged edge. Could pass for an air max before you see the ridged sole under the toes. One of the early ACG models. Super light weight and comfortable- narrow- might not work for the fat footed folks. Triple F son. With jeans or shorts, these kicks are perfect. The last Wildwood released in the US was the navy with sea crystal swoosh- early 2004. Europe released some up to mid 2004- notably this brown and orange pair. And then the mystery began. Where o where did all the Wildwoods go? Ebay had some, but the amounts were dwindling, nearly reaching endangered species status.
2 other samples have been popping up on the net and ebay. One pair is a simple white and black sneaker with a varsity red swoosh and midsole. Cool breeze in this one.
The other one is a bit too Kanye for me. I see you Nick. A green and purple safari colorway- safari being the textured exotic leather- with a patent pink swoosh. Also includes a splattered heel tab. My jeans aren't tight enough to fuck with these.
2 other images that came from a catalog look decent. The men's shoe is this anthracite, concord, black, volt colorway that looks mean. The concord purple midsole and swoosh and the speckled strip above the midsole gives the shoe some extra flavor.
The women's shoe is decent- white, dark cayenne, sunset, metallic gold. The leather looks textured. Not a fan of the gold, but it might look cute on little feet. Catalog images can look completely different from the final product, so who knows what they'll actually look like. Props to ebay and niketalk for the images.
Aside from Air Force 1s, Wildwoods are my number 1. They even trump forces at times and take the throne. They aren't as clunky as forces and for a summer that's about to be hot as potatoes, you want those lightweight joints on the dogs- keeps the woofing to a minimum. Amazingly, the toe boxes handle wear very well and rarely show creases. Peep the photo. All of the pairs have been worn multiple times and stay fresh. Howfresh? My only complaint with Wildwoods is the paint cracking on the midsoles. It happens on nearly every pair.
Currently I'm playing with 8 wearable pairs. Always looking for more, the safari colorway in particular, and whatever I can get in a size 12. I feel it's important that this unheralded sneaker gets the attention and exposure it deserves. After the Wildwood BBQ post I had intentions of expounding on this special sneaker but got sidetracked. I apologize for the delay. With that, I introduce you to the Nike Air Wildwood.
The OG pair from 1989. Unwearable- the sole is cracked and would completely crumble if worn. A true relic of the late 80s, early 90s. When the downtown folks were rocking North Face and bright shit. I think they retroed these in the mid 90s, and it's time Nike does it again.
The OG retros. A beautiful sneaker that was re-released more than once. Black, gray and red colorways work 10 out of 10 times. The swoosh really screams on these. Says pimento, but could pass for infrared (air max 90s and Jordan 6s). 2nd pair, so I need to keep these ultra crispy. June 2003 production date.
The Rhinos- a co.jp (Concept Japan) release. Never released in the states. I used to think this was the greatest sneaker ever made, the way the gray (rhino) nubuck and leather played off the purple and forest green, but those feelings have diminished. The midsole should be bright white as opposed to the net/off white color and the cracking makes me sick. January 2004 production date.
The Skyline JDs. Released from JD Sports in the UK, never available here. Part of a pack with a pair of Air Max 90s, the baby blue compliments the brown and beige very well. The raspberry ACG on the midsole takes this shit over the top. December 2003 production date.
The Bark Pack. You can beat the shit out of these and they still look new. The textured leather- similar to bark on a tree- is a nice touch with the dragon red swoosh. Definitely a more mature looking colorway. Put a brown polo on and sip some cognac. Released as a premium shoe. September 2003 production date.
The Navy/ Sea Crystals. The pair to rock with a Yankee jersey and fitted. The toned down teal doesn't overpower the rest of the shoe. Perfect for a laid back dude like myself. January 2004 production date.
The Chino/ Energy pack. Probably the most comfortable wildwood I've owned thanks to the mesh toebox, side/ankle panels, and tongue. I've beat these up and would love to get another pair. June 2003 production date.
The Yellow midsoles. The most recent pair I've acquired. Didn't love them when they were in stores, but we have learned to get along. That yellow is tough to do at times. December 2002 production date.
The Candied Yams. Yeah, I named them myself. They just remind me of yams with the marshmallow on top- especially with the charred parts. I got these from a friend in the UK. I was expecting a different pair but was pleasantly surprised when I saw these. Purchased from a London footlocker, I've yet to see anybody else with these. A 1 of 1? Don't ruin my dreams. June 2004 production date.
Hopefully this post answered all your questions regarding Wildwoods. There are other colorways out there, especially some really fresh female pairs, but that's for another day.