Footwear 

Virgil Abloh's 5 Most Influential Sneaker Designs

A tribute to a visionary who forever changed the game.

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26,807 Hypes

Virgil Abloh's 5 Most Influential Sneaker Designs

A tribute to a visionary who forever changed the game.

As the world grieves the loss of Virgil Abloh, we look back on the visionary’s impact on sneaker culture. Virgil will be remembered as a champion of young designers, a forward-thinker and a pioneer in bringing streetwear into luxury fashion.

In memory of the Off-White™ founder’s stellar body of work, we’re taking a look back at some of the designer’s most influential footwear releases.

Off-White™ x Nike Air Jordan 1

Arguably his most notable offering, Virgil famously brought his deconstructed aesthetic to the Air Jordan 1. The Off-White™ AJ1 released as part of “The Ten” collection, a 10-part release in 2017 that also included models spanning the Nike/Jordan/Converse family. The unprecedented collection also included a Converse Chuck Taylor, Nike Zoom Fly SP, Nike Air Force 1 Low, Nike React Hyperdunk 2017, Nike Air Max 97, Nike Air Max 90, Nike Air Presto, Nike Air VaporMax and Nike Blazer Mid.

Virgil often spoke about creating the Off-White™ Air Jordan 1, remarking that he completed it in one design session.

Off-White™ x Nike Blazer Mid “Queen”

Designed in partnership with Serena Williams, this Blazer Mid combines Virgil’s design ethos with punches of color tennis fans associate with Serena’s on- and off-court style. The Blazer released as part of a larger collection that included apparel as well as NikeCourt Flare 2 and Air Max 97 models. The collection celebrated Black women, a mission Virgil went on to support in partnership with activist Trinice McNally and Black Women Radicals.

Off-White™ x Nike Air Jordan 4 “Sail”

While Virgil had released a great many monochromatic designs, including the Air Force 1 Low in “Volt” and “University Gold,” the Air Jordan 4 “Sail” was by far his best iteration. The subdued release set the stage for numerous subsequent monochromatic models, including the Air Jordan 4 “Shimmer.” The release went on to be the most hyped women’s sneaker in resale history.

Louis Vuitton 408

Virgil’s first sneaker silhouette at Louis Vuitton took elements from the Air Jordan 3 and AVIA 880. The silhouette went on to be reimagined as a low-top, and saw increased popularity when Virgil and NIGO collaborated on the model as part of the LV Made collection.

Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1

Virgil celebrated throwback bootlegs with bodacious LV AF1s that drip with ’90s style. This forthcoming Louis Vuitton x Nike collaboration perfectly encapsulates Virgil’s approach to design, combining accessibility with luxury — and doing it all for the culture.

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