England’s controversial new black kit, that they are wearing at the World Cup, has inspired sportswear giant Nike to launch an exclusive limited edition AM1 HYP shoe. Taking their inspiration from the new England change kit, which has caused anger in New Zealand, the 100% black shoe features new Hyperfuse technology to create a powerful, minimalist look. The words ‘New’ and ‘Blood’ are also emblazoned on the tongue of each shoe in contrasting red stitching.
The launch event featured a mix of rugby, music and design talent at London’s Niketown. The MC for the night – DJ VIS – was joined by some potential future England stars, Owen Farrell, Andy Saull, Tom Varndell and Dom Waldouck for an informal Q&A (below).
Inspired by the new breed of England rugby player and the traditional tattoos of the New Zealand Māoris, NIKEiD commissioned Robert Akome from London’s Ink Lounge to design a set of ‘New England’ designs through live tattoo demonstrations on latex skin. Three designs were created before the event and a fourth was designed live on the night so guests could see how these intricate, symbolic designs are developed. Tattoo artist Roberto Chung set up a live tattoo session on the night, using one of the designs created earlier. Hit+Run, world leaders in screen-printing, were on hand all night to create customized, one-off t-shirts adorned with a selection of the designs.
On the night, there was a charity auction of an ultra-rare ‘England Squad Pack’ featuring a pair of NIKEiD AM1 HYP and a set of custom-made black Nike x Beats by Dr. Dre headphones featuring England Rugby’s iconic red rose emblem. The limited edition pack was specially created for every member of the England Rugby squad who recently travelled out to New Zealand and is not for sale.
Video courtesy of London’s Ink lounge, Palmers Green.