This Nike Air Yeezy 1 Released at Retail 10 Years Ago Today

May 4, 2019 | Ian Stonebrook |

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Recently, we celebrated the 10-year-anniversary of the Nike Air Yeezy 1 launching at retail for the first time in its famed “Zen Grey” colorway.

Today, however, marks the decade long mark of the retail release for the famed Black/Pink or “Blink” colorway. True to their nickname, the Black/Pink Yeezys sold out in the blink of an eye when released at retail ten years ago on May 4, 2009.

Debuted by Kanye West during his co-starring role in Keri Hilson’s “Knock You Down” video, the R&B guest spot was a warm-up of sorts for Ye’s rap comeback after dropping his off-genre, mostly sung but industry changing 808s & Heartbreak album.

The mullet was cut down, somewhat symbolizing the rebirth of rapping Kanye though a shag still showed up. While Ibn Jasper’s clipper work was on full display, it was West’s Black/Pink Yeezys that stole the show.

Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black Pink
Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink

To some the best Yeezy 1, to a few even the best Yeezy ever, the bold color scheme was seen on Kanye’s feet for the first time in the video following a studio shot preview in Complex Magazine.

This was a big deal at the time. West had publicly worn the recently released “Zen Grey” Yeezy 1 and had already rocked the yet-to-drop “Net” colorway on Ellen. The “Knock You Down” video made waves across the web, showing Ye in the “Blinks” for the first time.

Ibn Jasper & Kanye West in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink

Soon after, he’d rock them in public.

Like the other colorways, they were a favorite amongst his famous friends and an early mover on the still young resale market.

Kobe Bryant in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink

The “Blink” color scheme would live again in some fashion, inspiring the “Solar Red” SKU on the shoe’s sequel – the Nike Air Yeezy 2.

As seen on shelves and in sketches, the Black/Solar Red styling definitely took cues from the OG, placing black all over the upper, the hot hue on the liner and a glowing aeshetic to the outsole.

Nike Air Yeezy 2 Black Solar Red
Nike Air Yeezy 2 Black/Solar Red

Said scheme has never graced any of West’s work with adidas though Nike Sportswear definitely gave the Black/Solar Red blocking more than a few laps on unrelated retro models and lifestyle favorites.

Both the “Yeezy” Foamposites and Roshe Run FB famously sported the updated take on the Black/Pink-Glow theme.

Nike Air Foamposite Pro Solar Red
Nike Air Foamposite One Black/Solar Red (2014)

While it may have been polarizing or even punk to place pink on a sneaker, that was Kanye perhaps at his best in 2009.

Just the same, it might have been Nike at its most daring or risk-taking in regards to product.

It all kicked off when the shoe release at retail ten years ago today.

Check out some of the other celebs who rocked the “Blink” Yeezy 1s over the years below.

Bun B in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 “Blink” & Drake in the Air Jordan 5 “Raging Bull” (Photo by Johnny Nunez/WireImage)
G Eazy in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink
Nelly in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink
Kid Cudi in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink
Kevin Hart in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink
Wale in the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Black/Pink

NEVER MISS A RELEASE AGAIN