To many sneaker-heads, the Nike Foamposite sneaker is the highlight of any collection. They sell out within minutes every time they become availible and often re-sell for well over 100% above retail price. People are willing to wait on line for hours just to get their hands on a pair. In honor of these great sneakers, we at DTLR want to give a special Nike Foamposite history lesson.

Although they seem like a new item, the Nike Foamposite sneaker made its debut in 1997. It was a revolutionary design that sneaker designers and manufacturers thought would be impossible to create.

Eric Avar, the Nike designer who created the first Foamposite, originally intended the shoe to be made for Scottie Pippen and not Penny Hardaway. The beetle, (not the car, but the insect) and in particular, the exoskeleton of the insect inspired the original design for the Nike Foamposite.

Once the concept of the Foamposite was developed, Nike ran into major issues.  How would they manufacture a shoe that would perform to their standards out of foam? It was an issue that caused much stress during the development phases of the shoe. Thanks to the minimal use of leather and stiching, the Foamposite required many new technologies to be successful. Luckily, the Daewoo Company, which is known for cars and televisions was able to find a solution to the manufacturoing problems. As a result, they played a vital role in the development of the Foamposite.  Thanks to their research and development department, Daewoo were able to develop a working Foamposite design.

So how is a Foamposite made? The “foam” material starts off as a liquid that needs to be boiled at a temperature between 130- 175 degrees Fahrenheit.  Once in place (in the mold), the liquid is cooled and solidified.  Check out Nike’s own process diagram (found on our friend’s Nicekicks site)  As a result of this non-stiched construction, many adjustments needed to be made to keep all the parts of the shoe together. For example, the midsole alone must be 5 times stronger than glue and stitching.  Along with a keeping everything together via a super strong construction, the shoe uses carbon fiber to add extreme stiffness.

Because of the revelotionary nature of the Foamposite, the shoe was quite expensive to make. The process of making these shoes is neither easy nor cheap. The mold alone for these shoes has been rumored to be valued at $750,000 and that’s just for the shape. The original retail price for the shoe was set at $180 and even that was a struggle at first.  In fact, the Foamposite was often sold on sale just to attract buyers. Along with struggeling to sale, after the initial release, the original Foamposite molds were destroyed since suppliers didn’t think they would ever be re-released until the foams came back as a retro.

List of Foamposite Release Dates

Nike Air Foamposite One “Royal Blue” 1997, 2011
Nike Air Foamposite Pro “Voltage” 1997
Nike Air Foamposite Pro “Pearl” 1997, 2002, 2009, 2010
Nike Air Foamposite One “Stealth” 2007, 2012
Nike Air Foamposite One “Cough Drop” 1997, 2010
Nike Air Foamposite One “Dark Army” 2008
Nike Air Foamposite One “Eggplant” 2009, 2010
Nike Air Foamposite One “Copper” 2010
Nike Air Foamposite Pro “Electric Green” 2011
Nike Air Foamposite One “Pewter” 2011
Nike Air Foamposite One “Electric Green” 2011
NIke Air Foamposite Pro “Gym Green” 2012
Nike Air Foamposite Pro “Bright Crimson” 2012
NIke Air Foamposite One “Metaliic Red” 2012
Nike Air Foamposite One “Galaxy” 2012
Nike Air Foamposite One “Paranonorman” 2012
Nike Air Foamposite One “Fighter Jet” 2013
Nike Air Foamposite One “Phoenix Suns” 2013
Nike Air Foamposite One “All-White”

 

2013

 

 

Looking to see if we have any Nike Foamposites on Sale? Visit our Nike Store and don’t forget to join our email list to get first knowledge of our Nike Foamposite release information.