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Introducing the Air Jordan 1

During Michael Jordan's first season in the NBA, he not only earned a spot with the Chicago Bulls, but also a sponsorship deal with Nike. It took Jordan some convincing to switch from Converse to Nike (the Chuck Taylor had been Jordan's favourite sneaker during college), however, the Air Jordan 1 blew his worries away in 1985.

The first sneaker that Michael Jordan wore was designed by Nike's former creative designer, Peter C. Moore. Jordan complained about Nike's thick soles and couldn't feel the track through them, so this was one of the first changes made. Additionally, many of Nike's signature features were introduced in the Air Jordan 1. A compressed air pocket was located in the heel, an overlay was placed on the toe, and additional ankle support was provided. Future designs were inspired by the logo, the wings on the side of the shoe.

Fragment Design x Air Jordan 1

The Jordan 1 Retro Fragment is a collaborative sneaker from Jordan Brand and Fragment Design. The upper is all-leather with black colour areas on the toes accented by royal blue. The sneaker has a white base on the toecap and centre panel. The black colour returns on the forefoot, Swooshes, tongue, eyelets and ankle collar.

The design is completed by a white midsole and a royal blue rubber outsole. The sneaker was available on 27 December 2014 and cost $185. Prices for this colorway vary these days on webshops such as StockX from €2,800 to €10,000. The sneaker is especially loved for its timeless black/white/royal blue colorway and comes with an extra set of blue laces.

Popular AJ1 Colorways

Fragment Design x Air Jordan 1

Royal Blue

The Air Jordan 1 Royal Blue, the first colour made accessible to the general public, was Michael Jordan's personal favourite. Jordan appeared in an early promotional campaign in this blue-black hue, but it was not his team colour. Chuck Kuhn, a well-known sports photographer, shot the campaign.

The image of Jordan in Royal Blues with a matching jumper during sunset on a lonely runway in Oregon is as famous as the sneaker it represents.

air jordan 1 Black Toe 1

Black Toe

One of the original AJ-1 colours, the Black Toe, is still considered one of the sneaker's most recognisable and beloved models. Despite the fact that Jordan rarely wore them on the field, the Black Toe worn by Michael Jordan during the photo shoot was the model for the now iconic Jumpman symbol. Therefore, it will always be considered one of the most beautiful Jordan colours ever.

Air Jordan 1 Bred 1985


Only the BRED or Banned Air Jordan 1 colorway could be described as badass. Jordan was fined $5,000 each time he wore the famous Chicago Bulls-inspired sneakers for violating NBA dress code. That, according to Nike, is what happened.


While the UNC colorway is not as popular as some other freshman Air Jordan 1s, it is still one of the most appealing pairs of Air Jordan 1s. The UNC combines white and Carolina Blue hues on an all-leather upper as a tribute to Jordan's alma mater, the University of North Carolina.

Air Jordan 1 Shadow 1985 1


With the hugely popular BRED and Royal Blue colorways, it is easy to overlook the fifth famous colorway of the AJ-1's original shoe: the melancholic black-grey Shadow. Even after 35 years, this is still the tightest Air Jordan there has ever been, even if it doesn't get as much attention as the other classics.

Banned Air Jordan 1 vintage photo


In an attempt to resolve the controversy surrounding the BRED, Nike created this competition-approved red, white and black colorway, which soon came to symbolise the AJ-1 itself. When sneaker lovers hear the term "sneakers", this is the colorway they think of.

The Chicago, also known as Varsity Red, the hue on which Virgil Abloh based his now iconic "The Ten" collection's updated version of the AJ-1.

Air Jordan 1 Retro XQ


The China-exclusive XQ colorway of the AJ-1 is one of the most unique pairs in Nike history. It features star-studded leather panels and unique details.

Despite being a successful brand that makes a lot of money, Nike has only renewed this colorway once. This sneaker shows how Nike excels when it takes creative risks with its design template.

 Air Jordan 1 HARE 2009


Inspired by the Air Jordan 7 colorway of the same name, the HARE Jordan 1 has made its mark on the most obsessed sneaker lovers. Despite being a tie-in to a cartoon sneaker, this neutral grey and white colorway with red accents still looks dope.

The iconic Jumpman logo has been replaced with Bugs Bunny, which may sound like a bad idea on paper, but looks very fresh in practice. The HARE colorway has been used on several Air Jordans so far and it always looks good.

Air Jordan 1 Shattered Backboard 2015

Shattered Backboard

This colorway was inspired by a practice match in Italy during Jordan's first year.

Jordan wore an orange, black and white uniform and dunked so hard that he smashed the backboard, making history. This incident took place in 1985 and after 30 years, the colorway was released in 2015 as the starfish orange on black and sail colorway. Today, the Shattered Backboard colorway is considered a modern classic and one of the best colorways of the AJ-1.

Air Jordan 1 Igloo 2017


The Igloo colorway is considered the second most beautiful Jordan 1 after the Jordan 1 UNC. Released exclusively for Art Basel, it features mint, black and white colours.

The design is inspired by the waterfront of Miami's South Beach.

Whether it really managed to capture the look and feel of South Beach remains to be seen, but it is widely considered a cool and stylish sneaker.

Off-White x Air Jordan 1 OG 'Chicago' - The Ten

In 2017, Nike and Off-White came together for a unique collaboration called 'The Ten'. Created by designer Virgil Abloh, the Air Jordan 1 x Off-White has a deconstructed aesthetic that sets it apart from other sneakers.

It has the classic 'Chicago' colorway and includes semi-finished elements such as a Swoosh attached to the shoe with visible blue stitching, 'Air' on the midsole and an Off-White zip on the collar. The box that comes with the sneakers is also deconstructed, with a black base and gold Jumpman logo on the inside, while the outside consists of plain cardboard with the words 'Jumpman' printed on it.

The sneakers were in high demand and sold out quickly. It is no surprise that this shoe is so popular, with retail prices at StockX ranging from €5000 to €10.000.