This is so sneaker culture.
A small team of Korean cobblers runs a company called Hvnd Studio, which operates a legally-dubious cottage industry making replicas of the original Jordan I sneaker. But this isn’t your typical knock-off joint. These guys actually use leather that is considered top quality and they also put the shoes together using classic techniques.
Yeah, they’re fakes, but they’re as gorgeous as the real thing, and not-as-much-but-still expensive, too, at $1,250.
If you’re not familiar, the Jordan I is the classic 1985 sneaker from basketball‘s greatest of all time, Michael Jordan. It’s a modern-day gem that has been massive in pop culture for decades now — and they’re also attached to the legacy of the GOAT. In fact, Jordans are so popular nowadays that an unworn original pair can easily sell for over $20,000.
So what does a company like Hvnd Studio do?
Simply re-makes them, and although they’re still expensive, they’re much cheaper than the actual Jordan I. (RELATED: SIU-Edwardsville’s DeeJuan Pruitt Absolutely Sucker Punches Tennessee-Martin’s Rifen Miguel Who Was Playing Mind Games)
And they go pretty hard at it too. They start things off by stripping down an actual Jordan I sneaker to the sole and replacing the “upper,” which is a process that takes anywhere between 4-6 weeks. Using top-of-the-line Korean leather, they recreate every detail from the original shoes, and after that’s done, they then hand-last the upper to the sole.
And the result: a beautiful pair of “Jordans,” which are actually considered by many to be better than the real thing:
The sample prototype brought to life, customized by HVND Studio ????
????: @nikestories pic.twitter.com/rfEi1dpzgO
— Sole-U (@SoleUniv) December 13, 2021
“Hvnd Studio is a very different business to your neighborhood teen repainting his shoes. They don’t even use paint. Rather, each piece is dyed at Korean tanneries, often requiring several attempts until the color is just right.”https://t.co/0tcn4ngQQO
— The Spectator World (@TheSpectator) February 16, 2023
Now, if only a company can figure out how to make affordable ones.