The Air Force 1 Mid sneakers from Stüssy and Nike are finally releasing this week.
Stüssy and Nike have been partners long enough to know what constitutes a good collaboration. In 2000, they joined forces on a humble Nike Air Huarache and sealed a partnership that will continue to this day. Fast forward a few decades, and the duo are finally ready to release their Air Force 1 Mids that have been teased for the better part of a year.
Lace them — As expected, the sneakers will come in three color variants: a black and white “Panda” lookalike, an earthy “fossil hemp,” and an all-black variant with snakeskin Swooshes. The tan iteration essentially follows the same recipe as the duo’s 2020 Air Force 1 collaboration, opting for a higher cut than the previous Low. Each of the three features interlocking double S perforations on the toe box, embroidered Stüssy on the ankle strap and a special co-branded tongue label.
Joining the sneakers is a clothing collection that follows Stüssy and Nike’s plans for laid-back surfer vibes and comfortable performance wear. Loungewear comes in the form of t-shirts, hoodies, sweatpants, and hats. Gray and black appear on the co-branded minimalist tracksuits, while lime green takes over a second pair of pants.
The t-shirts feature a “Peace, Love, Swoosh” message with a stacked peace sign, heart and Swoosh topped with the signature Stüssy script logo. More branding can be seen on the cups, which feature Swoosh and Stüssy script. According to the streetwear label, the collection aims to celebrate sport in local communities.
No middle ground — Due to its awkward waistline, lack of exclusivity and history, and slang connotation of being below average, some sneakerheads believe the Mid silhouette is an insult to sneaker culture. However, bringing in a name like Stüssy to spruce up a few variations — and tapping into the “Panda” hype at its peak — might be enough to earn the seal of approval. If not for the older generation who like to wince when things get too popular, then for the new era of sneakerheads who just love a good shoe.
The Stüssy x Nike Air Force 1 Mid and accompanying apparel releases at 1 p.m. ET this Friday, May 13 via the streetwear OG’s website. The duo may have taken a risk in choosing the Mid, but the collaboration itself may make it pay off.