In the world of sneaker collaborations, few partnerships stand out as significantly as Supreme and Nike SB. The relationship between these two streetwear giants is not only about what’s released, but also about the designs that didn’t quite make it. One such design journey from 2003 is the Supreme x Nike SB Dunk with gold Swooshes.
In 2003, Supreme and Nike SB united to honor the original 1986 college “Be True to Your School” colorways. The “College Orange” and “Varsity Red” versions were interpreted as upscale reinterpretations of the vintage collegiate classics donned by Syracuse and St. John’s. The “University Blue” variant echoed a similar sentiment, albeit without a direct OG colorway counterpart for comparison. The blue hue, however, is likely to be inspired by the shades representing the nearby Columbia University. The original plan included a Dunk Low version that sported a deluge of golden Nike Swoosh logos. However, the design was perceived as too extravagant, prompting concerns over copyright issues at Nike and apparently disapproval from Supreme founder James Jebbia himself. As a result, this bold low-top design was rejected.
However, not only were there rejected Dunk Lows, but there were also Dunk His in the same colorways and pattern. The journey of the rejected Dunk His took an turn when famed collector @applied.arts.nyc recently revealed the existence of the once-discarded designs. The mystery of these samples, rumored to have been lost or destroyed, just adds to their allure.
After they were discarded, in place of the abundant Swooshes, Supreme added golden stars to the accepted Dunk His. The launch back then was meticulously planned, with one colorway released each day to prevent customers from doubling up. Two colors were recently sold for a whopping $10,000 each on StockX.
Years later, in 2021, Supreme and Nike SB came back together for a fresh trio of Dunk Lows, each pair incorporating the signature gold stars and croc skin overlays from the 2003 drop. Four colorways were unveiled: Hyper Blue, Mean Green, Black and Barkroot Brown. They all selling between $500 and $1,000 at the moment.
Fast forward to 2023, Supreme will release another pair of Nike Dunks. This time no swooshes and stars but artwork by Rammellzee. Who is excited for those?