One Block Down x New Balance 991 & 1500 « Marble Grey »
Italian streetwear boutique ONE BLOCK DOWN teamed up with Boston-based brand NEW BALANCE to design a pack « Made in Uk » based on the iconic 991 and 1500 running silhouettes. This capsule in « Marble Grey » colorway pays tribute to the impact each of these sneakers has had on the codes of the Italian subculture.
The name of the shop founded by Patrizio Vita in 2009 ONE BLOCK DOWN means « one block down » with the implication « for the culture of the subculture ». With his « subculture » store located a stone’s throw from Piazza del Duomo in Milan, the heart of the historic center of the Italian capital of fashion and design, Patrizio wanted to develop this subculture, share it and make it discoverable in order to bring together. The founder of OBD drew heavily on his experience in the fine arts and his cultural heritage to define the identity of his boutique and bring his innovative vision of design to life. In an interview with Nike, Patrizio explained, « Art and aesthetics are typically Italian traditions that fascinate us. They are our origins, that’s why we always put an artistic touch to everything we do ». Today ONE BLOCK DOWN is also located in another great Italian city steeped in history, Rome.
The New Balance brand is much loved and popular among Italians. It carries an identity of anti-conformity to trends, it appears as a canvas on which it is possible to create one’s own heritage, one’s own unique style. New Balance shoes have given birth to an Italian sub-cultural awakening, creating a new story based on : the heart, the sole and the strong and unique identity.
The reinterpreted 991 and 1500 silhouettes represent respectively the Milanese « bourgeoisie » and the Roman « ultras ».
These two models have a similar construction. The color palette chosen is essentially in shades of grey. The shoes consist of a metallic grey mesh base with light grey nubuck overlays. The look is completed by dark grey inserts on the toe box and ankle, as well as reflective details such as the side N logo, tongue branding and heel tab. Each silhouette is adorned with a yellow lace dubrae with the name of the Italian shop in red. The models do have a nice difference : on the 991, the name of the city it honors, MILAN, adorns the right heel, while ROME stands out on the side mudguard. These two elements appear in red embroidery, adding contrast and cachet to the pair. For both silhouettes, the midsole is white and the outsole is two-tone, grey and black, to add the harmonious final touch to the design.
The One Block Down x New Balance 991 & 1500 « Marble Grey » will be released on December 16, 2020 on the Italian store eu.oneblockdown.it. The NB 991 will be available in men’s and women’s sizes for 190€, and the exclusive men’s NB 1500 will cost 170€.
A « special pack », not available for sale, has been sent to selected One Block Down partners. In addition to the sneakers, it includes a fanzine, classic reproductions of Milanese and Roman cult sites : Il Duomo and il Colosseo (the colosseum), as well as a less conventional version of each of these moments shaped with the initials NB.