Paying Homage To The Beginnings of Sneaker Culture

Paying Homage To The Beginnings of Sneaker Culture

Jordan Brand will release the Air Jordan 1 “Lost and Found” this month, a classic Chicago Bulls-inspired colorway with a purpose-built reconstruction that is intended to be as close to the original 1985 release as possible. The true beauty of this version of this iconic Air Jordan 1 release is in its story, which is an homage to the “Mom and Pop” sporting goods stores that helped make the original Air Jordan an overwhelming success.

Collecting, reselling, and the overall business of sneakers has become a multi-billion dollar industry over nearly four decades of Air Jordan releases. A majority of these releases are retros with slight variations from their originals, and a few of them, have become as sought-after amongst sneakerheads as the OGs they mimic. The “Lost and Found” Air Jordan 1 is all but guaranteed to become legendary.

When Nike first released Air Jordans in 1985 they sold well but were heavily discounted by retailers trying to move inventory quickly. This created an opportunity for passionate MJ fans to find pairs at very low prices - some even under $20! In 1994 when MJ retired from basketball (to play baseball) Nike reintroduced many old models including Chicago 1s which resulted in another round of heavy discounting by retailers trying to clear space for newly introduced Jordans like the Air Jordan 10 and Air Jordan 11.

For years, enthusiasts would go on the hunt for these discounted “deadstock” shoes that had been collecting dust in the stockrooms and basements of these small businesses. The Air Jordan 1 “Lost and Found” pays tribute to those retailers that are long and gone but helped establish the sneaker game as we know it today. Early photos from Ten Toes Memphis show the incredible details of the packaging of the “Lost and Found” AJ1, as well as the aged crackle finish that emulates those pairs from back in the day.

Look for these on the SNKRS app on November, 19th.




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