Tinker Hatfield Talks Nike Sock Dart-Inspired Jordan Standard

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Legendary designer Tinker Hatfield has been responsible for designing many of the most sought-after sneakers till this day, ranging from the Air Jordan lineage, Nike MAG, Air Max line and many others.

For his latest creation with the lifestyle-inclined Jordan Standard, Nike’s VP of Design and Creative Concepts has shared five things about its design process and shoe’s overall aesthetic. Learn about it below.

On being similar to the Nike Sock Dart…

TH: “Even though it’s inspired by the Sock Dart, it has a modern look. And it’s so comfortable.”

On the simplicity of getting in and out of the shoe was the design focus as well the aesthetic…

TH: “Overall, the upper has this sort of stretch fit. And there’s a big hole in the tongue that you put your fingers through to easily pull it on. I played around with stuff that we wouldn’t normally do on an athletic shoe and kept trying to add other little features like a little cargo net in the back that would help with getting the shoe on or off.” [Hatfield ended up nixing the net.]

On the three major textures at play…

TH: “I wanted to use a really unique material to show that we can take performance materials and blend them with materials no one has ever seen before to create some new excitement. That’s how the feathered leather on the forefoot came about. We also used high-tech stretch elephant print on the midfoot strap and spacer mesh around the collar.”

On the shoe’s solid colorway actually featuring three shades of color…

TH: “We decided on triple black and triple white. It’s hard to match colors, so we just sort of celebrate them. And the feathered leather really photographs as a different color because there’s so much shadow. To me, that’s a blueprint on how to have a little bit of fun and still make the shoe interesting.”

On the Jordan Sock Dart infused with Jordan DNA…

TH: “Jordan has a history of doing things that haven’t been done before. Going back to the original Air Jordan III with elephant print, the floater leather was not used in basketball at the time because it wasn’t considered to be robust enough. I was like, ‘Screw that, it’s going to work. We’ll just reinforce it in a few places.’ And sure enough, it just changed the way all basketball shoes were made because it made them instantly comfortable to break in. In that way, the feathered leather is Jordan-esque. We also use that elephant emboss here. The tongue holes nod to the two we used in the Air Jordan VI.”

The new Jordan Standard will be available in limited quantities at select Jordan Brand retailers and Nike’s website starting April 30.

For more, head on over directly to Nike.

Also, in case you missed it, here are Tinker Hatfield’s ten key tips for budding sneaker designers.

To stay updated on everything happening in the sneaker world, follow @Highsnobietysneakers on Instagram, check our sneaker release date calendar and subscribe to our sneaker chatbot on Facebook to receive lightning quick updates to your inbox.

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