Monday, February 1, 2010

Nike SB Dunk High - Gucci

This Nike SB Dunk High Premium "Gucci", a November 2009 limited Quickstrike release, has an interesting and somewhat convoluted story behind it. You see, way back in 2004, Nike SB came up with the idea to put together a "Team Manager" series designed by a skateboard team managers to be released in 2005.

Stussy team manager Robbie Jeffers designed a Dunk Low by taking inspiration from Neopolitian ice cream, using chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry colors. The tongue even features a cherry on it. The shoe was well received but it didn't jump out and grab folks like the other two designs in the series. Nowadays it sells for around $300 or so, pricey but not astronomical.

Diamond Supply Co. owner Nick Tershay--who got involved with the project through Sam Smyth--designed a Dunk Low by taking inspiration from the classic Tiffany blue diamond gift boxes. The tongue features a diamond, a clever nod to both brand name and the Tiffany box. The shoe's sales went bananas as demand far outstripped supply thanks to Nick posting a pic of the shoe on MySpace (remember when that was relevant?) and nowadays a pair runs well over $700 on the collector's market.

Girl Skateboards team manager Sam Smyth (aka RESN) designed a Dunk High, with assistance from Nick Tershay, by taking inspiration from the classic Gucci handbag colors. Well, there might be more behind the color inspiration [*cough*cough*] but we won't go there. Unfortunately, this sneaker didn't get released. While no one really knows for sure why--at least publically--the story goes that the parent company of Girl Skateboards, Girl Distribution, also owns Lakai Footwear, and the owners weren't happy that Girl was doing a collab with another footwear company, especially since their company was partially founded on the idea that they could make their own footwear brand rather than ride for a sponsored brand. Only 29 pair of the original Gucci Dunk Highs made it out to the public, and getting a hold of them was practically impossible. They now sell for well over $2,000 a pair.

Now fast forward almost 5 years to November, 2009.

For some reason, Nike finally decided to give the RESN Gucci Dunk Hi a proper release--and a limited Quickstrike one at that. I don't know what prompted them to finally drop em; I don't even know if Sam Smyth is even still with the Girl Skateboards team (he's not listed on their website, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything). I dunno, maybe everyone involved just finally got over the beef, if there even was one in the first place? Whatever the reason, they finally came out. The only differences between the original 2005 unreleased sneakers and the 2009 released ones are the tongue logo (original simply had a NIKE SB logo) and the amount of fraying on the edges of the denim.

I managed to snag a pair at retail from Index Skate Supply, thanks to my crew, Heat Seekers. Shoutouts to @Process817 and @Akuma471 for holding me down on this one.

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