Model: Nike Book 1 ‘Clay Orange’
Release date: February 17
Shop: Nike SNKRS
Imagine having your first signature sneaker worn by award-winning rapper Drake before it ever saw public release. That happened when Drake broke out Devin Booker’s Nike Book 1 ‘Clay Orange’ during his Arizona stop on the ‘It’s All A Blur’ tour. A further teaser was released when Unknwn Miami dropped 500 pairs of numbered Book 1 ‘Clay Orange’ back in December. These numbered pairs are going for thousands of dollars on resale platforms, further hyping up the release.
Book 1 design driven by vintage cars
The Nike Book 1 ‘Clay Orange’ was inspired by one of Booker’s restored vintage cars, a 1972 Chevy Blazer K5 named “Uncle Larry.” It also incorporates elements of iconic Nike silhouettes like the Air Force 1, Blazer, and Air Jordan 1. ‘Future classic’ was the phrase ingrained in the design process, which combines both lifestyle aesthetics and performance functionality for a timeless look.
Book 1 technology
Book 1 features Cushlon 2.0 foam within the midsole and a rigid TPU sidewall for added support, with a top-loaded Nike Zoom air bag in the heel. The upper features a workwear-inspired combination of canvas and twill that provide further durability while a suede collar and leather across the forefoot contribute to a plush and broken-in feel. Other small details include the initials of Booker’s family members on the back of the woven label, birth year on the pull tab, book pages heel book tab, and heel tab inspired by the spines of a book.
Criticism surrounding the launch of Nike Book 1
Despite the makings of a successful sneaker, Nike seems to have bungled the drop. Complex Sneakers recently posted a clip from its latest podcast episode that delves into the hiccups of the Book 1 launch.
Firstly, the silhouette’s design leans more towards a lifestyle sneaker than a high-performance basketball shoe. Additionally, the colorways showcased by Booker were nearly identical to existing Jordan Brand hits that weren’t connected to his story and didn’t offer a unique take on sneaker design.
Interestingly, the initial release of 500 limited pairs took place in Miami rather than Booker’s hometown of Phoenix, a departure from the usual practice of launching products in one’s home state. To make matters worse, the prolonged delay in the shoe’s release has dampened the initial excitement. Confirming that he shared the public’s sentiments, Booker himself commented on the Complex Sneakers post to say “A lot of people feel the same way”.
Still, the shoe will drop. For now, it has been said that the Nike Book 1 will be released on February 17, with a retail price of S$229. Stay tuned for more updates on local release dates and colorways to come.