Michael Jordan is widely considered to be the most iconic basketball player of all time. It is not surprising that his shoe brand has become a status symbol that is widely respected around the fashion community. The Air Jordan brand continues to innovate and release new designs to keep the line fresh. The shoes have continued to stay a hot commodity for more than two decades with no signs of slowing down. Jordan is primarily known for his time in Chicago as a member of the dominant Chicago Bulls teams of the 1990s. It is no surprise that one of his most prominent shoes pays homage to this history. The Air Jordan Legacy 312 makes direct reference to that history in its name. The number 312 is actually an area code of Chicago, providing a direct linkage with his time spent in the city. This is just one of the many features that make the Air Jordan Legacy 312 such a celebrated shoe of the Air Jordan brand.
What You Need to Know
In order to properly capture the Chicago vibe of the shoe, Air Jordan hired legendary sneaker designer Don C, a Chicago native and prominent streetwear designer. The design sought to capture the essence of the Air Jordan brand with a retro look that served as a throwback to Jordan’s early days in Chicago. The first release of the Air Jordan 1 was banned by the NBA, which sustainably rose the shoe’s profile. The Air Jordan Legacy 312 has a similar look and feel to the original banned Air Jordans that were introduced in 1984. This should give the sneakers a special place in the hearts of diehard collectors. The first line of Air Jordan Legacy 312s was released in the summer of 2018, showing a thorough display of style and creativity. Since then there have been several variations released that differ in both style and color.
Though what is not widely known about the shoe is that it almost never got off the ground at all. There were a series of leaks that jeopardized the release of the Air Jordan Legacy 312 in the months prior to its debut. The criticism of the new design was harsh, becoming cannon fodder to fashion and shoe bloggers who disapproved of the retro look. However, Don C was not one to take the criticism lying down. He viewed the leaks and the criticisms and concluded that the photos taken of the shoe were not its best. In order to counter the less-than-stellar images, he orchestrated a leak on his own terms. The new leak featured handpicked images featuring the shoes and colors that he felt was most representative of the design. The Air Jordan brand had a major problem with this, as he had not consulted with them first. However, Don C wanted to see authentic reactions to the designs to determine if they really needed to be changed. The good news is that the new images were much more popular with Air Jordan fanatics, who gave the new design a green light.
As made evident by the events preceding the release of the Air Jordan Legacy 312, the shoe business can be very harsh. The good news is that the design started to catch fire with Jordan fanatics and more casual consumers. There have been additional releases with new features and colors since the debut. The newest release of the Air Jordan Legacy 312 features a low cut with Lakers colors. These are two design changes that were not anticipated by fans of the shoe, but still work. It is clear that the Air Jordan Legacy 312 is continuing to carve out its niche as a retro throwback with a modern twist. The shoe continues to gain in popularity among the hip-hop scene, who love both the colors and the design. It is possible that more alterations could be made in the future to appease diehard Air Jordan fans, but for now the focus will be on the new low cut.
A Long Way
Sneakers have come a long way in the fashion world. Don C needed an entire press conference to launch this shoe in Paris. It is impressive how a sneaker has grown to such prominence in only a few short decades. There has been much speculation as to whether the buzz can continue around the new releases of Air Jordan brand, but so far Nike has been able to keep consumer interest without damaging the brand. It is a delicate balancing act that will continue for the foreseeable future. Hiring the most trendy designers is a step that Nike has taken to stay one step ahead with its Air Jordan brand. By being tapped into the day-to-day life of sneaker enthusiasts, they have been able to continually set the trend in the space. This is no easy accomplishment and something to continue to strive for in the future.
Overall, the Air Jordan Legacy 312 has much more to offer than the average sneaker. This includes the history, the design, and the tumultuous leaks that almost halted the shoe. By keeping a pulse on the industry, Air Jordan has continued to churn out hit after hit. Jordans have been a status symbol for over 20 years with no signs of slowing down. The new colors and low cut of the shoe will give sneaker enthusiasts plenty to talk about until the next Don C design. In the meantime, you might want to pick up a pair for yourself. You can own a piece of sneaker history for around $100 retail. This is a small price to pay given the status and history of the shoe. Love them or hate them, Air Jordan and Don C are committed to getting it right. This is something that any sneaker fan can continue to look forward to.
Written by Liz Flynn
Read more posts by Liz Flynn