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Nike Dunk HI NL – 15 YEARS OF THE UNDFTD DUNK NL – OLD VS. NEW

15 years ago Nike released the so-called Clerks Pack, a set of three silhouettes allegedly designed by the clerks of LA sneaker store UNDFTD, skate store Union (which nowadays is a rather high-priced streetwear boutique as you may know) and the local Stussy store.

While Union busted out a in our view kind of hideous Air Force 180, Stussy and UNDFTD without any doubt created two of the very best colorways of each respective style. Yeah, the Stussy Blazer is a whole chapter of its own, but as this is Dunkbar we’ll take a look at the legendary NIKE DUNK HI NL. Yep, no name-dropping love on the box for stores back then.

As info on the release back in 2005 differs from one sneaker blog to another, this is our account of the release details, reported from memory: The clerks pack was released as a quickstrike, not a Tier 0 release, so numbers should rather be in the 3000-6000 pairs range than much lower. It wasn’t that hard too get ahold of when it released, and even if you did not get it at one of the (admittedly few) sneaker stores, resell prices were at a totally different level at those times. These were not SBs, mind you. That being said, to obtain a DS pair nowadays is not that cheap anymore.

The liner-less construction of the DUNK NL was something unique at the time – an innovation that did not really take of (with the Dunk at least), as very few Dunk NL versions exist at all. We might talk about the other ones in some future post, but I better don’t raise expectations, as they’re…how to put this…lame.

To commemorate the 15th anniversary of the DUNK HI NL, we created a little old vs. new photoshoot – as in our eyes it aged beautifully, with the light green turning yellow and the leather wearing off. The beaters are size 13, that back-up pair is a size 12. (As these are liner-less, they fit really big!)

The leather Nike used for the UNDFTD NL is something else, matched only by some other Dunk releases of that era. Thick, soft nubuck and smooth leathers are dyed in rich colors in a palette from turquoise over purple down to pure black and that beautiful brown that shimmers from dark to light. The midsole in a light green sets a base for the bright green outsole.

Lots and lots of colors, but somehow they managed to make it work. We’d had loved to see the sampling process behind these, but the business was much more locked down on „no info for sneaker blogs“ back then. Yet maybe there’s someone out there reading this who can share some insight on that. Hit us up. Or send us the samples dammit.

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