In June 2022, the first general release LV Air Force 1s hit the market. The drop, which marked the retail debut of the historic Nike x Louis Vuitton collaboration, consisted of 9 covetable styles. Read on to discover more fascinating facts about the sought-after Virgil Abloh Air Force 1 shoes.
A Brief History of the Louis Vuitton Air Force 1
The Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1 first previewed in Summer of 2021 on the Maison’s Spring/Summer 2022 runway. Men’s artistic director Virgil Abloh designed 47 bespoke pairs of LV Air Force 1s for the collection. Fusing the trainer’s classic codes with the insignia and materials of Louis Vuitton, Abloh’s Nike x Louis Vuitton sneakers seamlessly connected the rich histories of both iconic brands. Every pair of Louis Vuitton Air Force 1s was made by Louis Vuitton in Fiesso d’Artico, marking the first time in the AF1’s 40-year history that the model was crafted outside of a Nike factory. All 47 of the Virgil Abloh Air Force 1 styles featured materials employed in his Louis Vuitton men’s collections, and were styled with his signature quotation marks. The Louis Vuitton Air Force 1s represent the last sneaker designs of the late Virgil Abloh’s storied career.
Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1: The Exclusive Auction Pair
For the groundbreaking first release of the LV Air Force 1, an edition of 200 Nike x Louis Vuitton shoes in an exclusive colorway were brought to global online auction at Sotheby’s in January 2022. Dressed in Louis Vuitton’s emblematic Monogram and Damier patterns with natural cowhide piping, each pair of exquisitely handcrafted Virgil Abloh Air Force 1 shoes came with its own orange pilot case in Monogram Taurillon leather.
Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1: The General Release Drop
The first hotly anticipated general release pairs of LV Air Force 1s became available to the public in June of 2022 through Louis Vuitton’s online store. Each shoe in the nine-piece collection is embellished with Abloh’s signature quotation marks and written graphics, including “LACET” on the laces and “AIR” on the midsole, and feature tongue tags with Louis Vuitton branding.
Three monochrome editions of the Louis Vuitton Air Force 1 offer a sleek and sophisticated take on the classic Nike shoe. The tonal black LV Air Force 1 Low is dressed in monogram debossed suede and features Louis Vuitton branding on the heel and tongue. While the cat-burglar sleekness of this shoe may take the concept of the LV Air Force 1 “silhouette” quite literally, the tonal white low and mid editions, in supple LV Monogram-embossed calfskin leather, pay homage to the iconic white-on-white AF1. The Virgil Abloh Air Force 1s are finished with gold accents, adding a carat of luxury to the classic hip-hop look.
Meanwhile, Abloh’s penchant for bold color is on vivid display in a trio of two-tone Louis Vuitton Air Force 1s, featuring bases of white Monogram-embossed calf leather accented with either green, red or blue Monogram leather overlays. These collegiate-inspired Nike x Louis Vuitton sneakers throw it back to the shoe’s original popularity among NCAA teams and fans. All three LV Air Force 1s feature Abloh’s signature accents, such as the neon tab on the lateral Swoosh and off-center tongue tags. The cupsole AIR logo and lace branding appear in quotes, an example of the tongue-in-cheek postmodernism that defined Abloh’s original Nike x Off-White collabs.
The drop also featured two Louis Vuitton x Nike AF1 sneakers in eye-catching metallics: one with a silver metallized canvas toe and multicolored panels of Monogram-embossed suede, the other dressed entirely in dazzling gold Monogram-embossed metallized canvas.
Rounding out this collection is a pair of LV Air Force 1 Mids dressed in the Maison’s iconic Damier pattern. A “Louis Vuitton'' graffiti motif, created by Milan-based tattoo artist and illustrator Ghusto Leon, is splashed across the side. This pair truly embodies the collision of luxury materials and street art that defines the legacy of Virgil Abloh’s outstanding collaborations.
In total, 21 Nike Air Force 1 Louis Vuitton retail release styles are expected. With nine revealed, the remaining twelve Louis Vuitton x Nike shoes are hotly anticipated – but the next drop remains, as yet, undisclosed.