The Nike x Carhartt WIP collection is releasing during an interesting time in fashion. To understand why this is, let’s take a look at the pack itself.
Swoosh + Workwear
Carhartt’s incredible array of durable materials come together with the sportswear giant. The result is a selection of remarkable designs. The pack includes four pieces of footwear. First, we see the Air Max 95. This edition of the iconic runner is dipped in military-esque hues. The base is in Black and comes with an overlay. This layer is made from a rip-stop fabric courtesy of Carhartt.
Next up, we have the Air Force 1 Utility Low. This represents the most impressive upgrade to the shoe in recent memory. The upper is in a leather build but features something of an extra. The camo tiger print pattern gives it an aggressive look that is somehow also understated. The look is meant to give off the ruggedness that is associated with Carhartt. Rest assured, comfort was also top of mind on this design. The inner lining of this AF1 includes an insulating wool. Along with this winter-appropriate layer, we also one last note of function. A ballistic nylon strap holds it all together for a unique and functional look.
The Nike Vandall Supreme High also gets some love. This shoe sees a minimal change to its classic form. A Black ‘Dearborn’ canvas base comes together with Gum bottoms. Orange details provide some subtle contrast.
Finally, rip-stop materials also show up on a version of the Air Max 95 in this release.
Another AF1 model is included here. This Air Force 1 Low is a bit less functional than its Utility counterpart. Still, the shoe undoubtedly features Carhartt design notes. Namely, we see this on the Fall-inspired upper. The base is in a cut of Carhartt’s signature Hamilton-Brown canvas and corduroy. Named after the brand’s founder, this color is a marker of its longstanding history.
Each model in this collection represents a focus on efficient design. A big part of that is lasting through several grueling wears. The choice of these particular models is no accident either. The AF1 and AM 95 are some of Nike’s most rugged builds.
Chunky to Utilitarian?
Nike’s involvement with Carhartt is hardly surprising. The workwear brand doesn’t have the reputation of some other Swoosh collaborators. That is, they aren’t Virgil Abloh or Ricardo Tisci. However, streetwear fans will recognize how momentous this collab is.
Carhartt has been in the game for a very long time. They have become bigger than their workwear roots as well. Today, the label finds itself continuing to emphasize functional design. That’s resulted in remarkable work with some distinguished names, including Junya Watanabe.
In 2018, Carhartt’s distinctive aesthetic might have reached a new level. The trend towards chunky footwear has had an interesting effect. Spreading beyond shoes, it’s put more focus on utility. The chunky designs have seen some models put more elements on the outside. Somewhat unintentionally, that’s brought more attention to the actual constructions. Garments and footwear designs are now under new scrutiny from consumers. Brands like Carhartt are an ideal answer to this.
Nike has been keying in on this sort of element themselves. Their work with Virgil Abloh has exposed classic Nike designs. Effectively, it’s turned everything inside out for the world to see. There’s nowhere to hide.
As such, it makes sense to take on work with Carhartt. They’ve proven to have a sophisticated eye for fashionable workwear. This has translated well into the world of streetwear. In fact, Carhartt’s emphasis on materials and durability is sure to outlast their aesthetic.
It’ll be interesting to see what other brands decide to go in this same direction. The sneaker and fashion communities are trending utilitarian. They don’t seem to be veering from this anytime soon.
So, we should expect to see more collaborative heat from Carhartt soon.
Available today, check out this collection at our store!