With the recurring FIFA World Cup fever steadily rising to an all-time euphoric high, designers Kim Jones and Virgil Abloh team up with Nike to join in on the fun and frenzy with their own definitive takes on football-focused athletic wear.
The groupings are in place, the schedules (and consequent alcohol-laden viewing parties) have been plotted on the calendar, and all of Russia is set to thaw—all thanks to the prestigious quadrennial football tournament, the FIFA World Cup. A primal coming together, sports has this ability to bring out the best, and well, worst in its most ardent and loyal fans. It’s part and parcel of the physical sport, but thankfully, despite preferential divisiveness, the World Cup brings everyone together for a damn good time in athletics.
Speaking of bringing out the best in people, the FIFA World Cup fever has not spared anyone, even the most seemingly un-athletic of the bunch—fashion. This sports season, Nike teams up with two men heralding the new age in modern luxury menswear: Kim Jones and Virgil Abloh. Sharing a common ground with Louis Vuitton, with Jones being the former men’s artistic director and Abloh the current one at the helm, the two form yet another prong in the road for Nike with two distinct takes on the game of football.
Under the baton of Dior Homme’s Kim Jones, his take on the football collection is a characteristic juxtaposition of two contrasting ideas. Inspired by the London Punk Era of the 70s, he melds a high-precision tailoring akin to his name with the functionality of sport tech. The collection, handcrafted in Italy, featuring restrained details and graphics that are minimal yet pack a style and sport punch. The staples, such as shorts, jersey’s and jackets, are reworked with new cuts that give a whole new identity to the pre-game threads.
Of course, we have to talk about the shoes. Taking his favorite Nike pairs, the Footscape, the Vandal and the Air Max 97, and crafts them into a sleek, almost futuristic rendering that can work in and out of the field.
Meanwhile, the social statement-anchored design sensibilities of Virgil Abloh has seen many a highly-anticipated, fast-selling collaboration with Nike. The “Football, Mon Amour” is no different, as he pulls from the memory of his youth, playing football in high school soundtracked by hip-hop tracks.
Bold and brave, the collection can be described as graceful but with a dash of irreverence. Visual cues abound with emblazoned texts, a stark contrast of black and white pattern, and shocking lashes of fluoro-orange. Virgil Abloh’s football-inspired shoe boasts of teal and white dots that emphasizes optimal zones where a player strikes the ball. Talk about well-coordinated and intelligent placements.
Whether you are a full-fledged fan of the game or a curious observer, one cannot help but get into the thick of things during the FIFA World Cup tournament. So, while we wait for the games to commence on the 14th of June, we can start suiting up in these tight athletic gear that are fashionable as they are functional. Sure, you may be rooting for your own respective teams, but on the fashion front, we would want to know, are you Team Jones or Team Abloh for the Nike Football releases? Let the games begin.
The Nike x Kim Jones “Football Reimagined” collection launches on June 7, and the Nike x Off-White “Football, Mon Amour” collection drops the week after on June 14. Both collections will be available at NikeLab Dover Street Market Singapore.