Nike’s new Air VaporMax Plus pays respect to an important footnote in TN history.
In the mid-90s, Sean McDowell inadvertently came up with the design that informed the Air Max Plus by looking at Floridian sunsets. When he started at Nike in 1997, he was tasked with designing a new sneaker called the ‘SkyAir’, a project with Foot Locker, and he remembered those sunsets. He got to work drawing the fade, but others at the company told him that he couldn’t do it; the material tech wasn’t there yet, they told him. But, recalling a fire-like fade on a pair of Nike Flame spikes that he ran in years earlier, McDowell devised a way to sublimate one colour with another and voila : the TN fade was born.