A glossy “glaze” coating is present across the vast majority of the upper, nodding to the sheen often found on traditional porcelain tableware. From the mudguards to the quarter panels and heel, every component offers a different pattern, but all are connected by a common thread — every pattern is one traditionally found on the delicate dishes. Ranging from the Double Happiness Bowl to the Mi Tong Bowl, the positive motifs represent everything from family reunions to healthy children and overall happiness. The bright colors used are a direct nod to the Chinese New Year, which is also known as the “Spring Festival.” Last but not least, a “Longevity” motif is sprinkled throughout.
Although the upper half may handle most of the heavy lifting from a design perspective, the bottom half is not bereft of unique embellishment. The EVA foam midsole and visible heel Air Max unit keep things relatively simple with a combination of black on the former and volt green on the latter. The outsole sneaks in one final detail, however, adding a Chinese character stamp under its icy blue and white folds. When translated, this roughly states “Nike Official Kiln,” a cheeky, simultaneous nod to the dishes’ hand-fired nature and the status symbol provided by the stamp present on the bottom of porcelain items.
The Nike Air Max 1 Premium “Chinese New Year” will release on Nike SNKRS China come January 18, with an MSRP of ¥1,099 CYR (approximately $160 USD).