BY popular demand, Nike have decided to drop the Nike Air Skylon II for the first time in 26 years – 1992 being the first and only time this pair was available. The Skylon OG, 1990, was Nike’s first sneaker to feature an air cushion in both the heel and forefoot of its sole unit; hence the re-release of the Skylon II being such a big deal.
It’s been pushed as a ‘modern update to the 90s original’.
Retailers saw two iterations hit shelves; one dubbed ‘Eggplant’ or ‘Grand Purple’, which combined a cream upper with a purple-to-blue faded panel on both the instep and side wall of the shoe. The other, swaps the ‘Eggplant’s’ cool palette with a solar red side wall that fades into pink.
It marked 26 years of collectors scouring third-party marketplaces, in the hope of finding a pair that hadn’t been tainted with storage or restoration marks. Nike designer and co-founder, Bill Bowerman, would have seen a selection of his technical performance silhouettes re-issued this year, after the Air Span II also received a retro treatment in early 2018. Infamously, the Span II was a personal favourite of the late Gary Warnett.
Both pairs feature a cream/off white suede overlay, sitting upon a white midsole and multi-coloured outsole – a colour combination determined by the midfoot gradient palette. An air cushion is encapsulated within the midsole, similarly to Bowerman’s Span II, which is accompanied by Nike International branding on the insole. Upon the heel, Skylon sits in a font reminiscent of 80’s pop art.
As the end of 2018 rolls ever-closer, you can expect a small capsule in partnership with Fear of God’s Jeremy Lorenzo, where Nike will present the Skylon II in a variety of tones. But what will set them apart from the rest? According to sources, Lorenzo will use the FoG repeater pattern — similarly to his Vans collections — across the mid-foot panel which replaces the notorious splash of colour.