2002 marked the beginning of a new wave that was about to start building for sneaker culture when the Nike SB division was formed.
At this point in time, convention would be broken. Not only would the brand collaborate with Supreme for the first offerings of skate-specific Dunks with the elephant print color blocking from the Jordan 3, but they would also be adopted by more than just people who skated.
Despite not having an assessed value at over one billion dollars just yet (2002), Supreme would kickstart the momentum for the beginning of the Dunk lineage in the division’s first year in production that are considered by many collectors of today to be their all-time grails. Prior to the brand’s collaboration with the now renowned streetwear label, Nike SB would really begin to turn the heads of core skate advocates by giving esteemed pros of the era, like Gino Ianucci, Reese Forbes, Danny Supa, and Richard Mulder their own signature colorways of the Dunk Low Pro SB.
And if one wasn’t enough, Nike didn’t waste any time on giving several of the aforementioned multiple colorways – some of which that would even introduce the high-top offerings of the iconic skate shoe.
Shortly after the boom the Supreme releases and the signature color palettes of the original four team riders, other natural collaborations with skate brands, Zoo York and Chocolate would follow suit. It wasn’t long before the idea of co-branded partnerships would forge a new meaning, welcoming the idea of artist series and even special projects with acclaimed sneaker boutiques.
2003-04 is when the brand would begin to further explode, unveiling yet another project with Supreme on the Dunk High with the addition of a City Series (Paris, Tokyo, London, and Pigeon) that still remain to be one of the most coveted SB gems of all-time. A year later, the Team Manager Series was born, giving different skate labels, like Nick Tershay of Diamond Supply Co. and Robbie Jeffers of Stussy to collaborate on their own Dunk Lows.
There were also collaborations on the Blazer and the Zoom FC with Real Skateboards and Alien Workshop, while the SB family also got their own rendition of the Team Edition silhouette, which was designed by their very own Hunter Muraira.
Eric Koston has been a household name in skateboarding since the 90s, but it was his signing with Nike SB in 2009 that his name would begin to shine brighter. What many people forget is that the Dunk altered its design makeup yet again after Boston came on-board, where he helped make the silhouette even more skate able by adding in more cushioning at the back of the heel to keep the shoes from slipping off, while the softer compound in the outsole ensured an even more pronounced grip. After this notable design influence, he would shortly be awarded with a Dunk Low and a Dunk High inspired by his Thai culture.
After a continuous wave of momentum, the brand would really begin to heighten their impact with a detailed approach to storytelling at the tail end of the 2000s. Bring in Boston boutique Concepts and suddenly a pair of shoes wasn’t just something to collect, skate, or wear on your feet. It became a story to connect with and a feeling of knowing what was really cool over others that didn’t. And the first collection of Lobster Dunks would make that exact impression – literally causing a stir throughout the city by putting up signs that warned people about these alienated lobsters roaming about the New England waters. It became so effective that they would continue to follow up their future releases with these same tongue and cheek antics, causing other collaborators and boutiques to follow suit.
Now it would seem like Nike SB is back in the driver’s seat, bringing back early team member, James Arizumi to the helm. As such, Nike SB has already delivered two new colorways of the Lobster series, new Diamond Dunk iterations, and even the latest Pigeon offering from Jeff Staple’s brand. It also might be helping to have the likes of celebrities like Travis Scott, LeBron James, and Virgil Abloh wearing them on a regular basis.
We proudly present to you a complete history of SB Dunks. Enjoy.
Richard Mulder was one of the original four Nike SB team members who also had one of their own signature colorways of the Dunk Low. Mulder’s inspiration behind his exclusive colorway drew influence from his first pair of Nikes, which were white and blue tennis shoes. Not only was he a member of the first four team riders, but his shoe was also the first Dunk SB ever.
Danny Supa’s colorway of the SB Dunk Low was the second iteration of the “Colors By” series, which utilizes East Coast team color blocking that pays homage to the skater’s roots in New York City.
Richard Mulder with a Bluntslide in the Nike SB Dunk Low “Supa”
Similar to Richard Mulder, Reese Forbes also wanted to create a colorway that mirrored another shoe. In his case however, he drew inspiration from a suede workboot. On top of that, he substituted the traditional cow suede for pig suede, which creates the soft textured aesthetic.
Gino Iannucci’s colorway of the SB Dunk Low was the final installment of the “Colors By” series. Gino’s inspiration for his rendition came from his affinity for dark colors and wanting the midsole to match the upper. Add in some butter soft perforations on the underlays and it becomes one of the most coveted Dunks of all time.
Richard Mulder with a Heelflip Backside Tailslide in the Dunk Low “Gino.”
After the first four rider inspired colorways of the SB Dunk Low, Nike then looked to each of the team member board sponsors for design influence. First up was Danny Supa’s Zoo York sponsor, whose co-founder utilized a series of stencils for the shoe art and ads. It remains one of the more challenging OG silhouettes for SB hunters and collectors alike to track down.
Supreme was Nike SB’s first official collaboration after branching out into its own division in 2002 and its held up as the Holy Grail for many collectors after all this time. This was the first time in history that the Black Cement colorway from the Air Jordan 3 had appeared on another shoe. Needless to say , this would become a ground-breaking maneuver that would allow both brands to reach new milestones.
If one Cement rendition of the SB Dunk Low wasn’t enough, Supreme wasn’t holding back, reworking the Jordan 3 elements into their own colorway of the classic print. The White Cement offering of the skate ready Dunk would the red with blue on the sockliner, while this rendering too would become a grail of its own.
Reese Forbes was one of the original four SB team members to get his own signature colorway on a Dunk and it wouldn’t be long until he would become the first to get a second. Relying heavily on the skater’s inspiration, the Denim iteration references design details from a signature jean that Reese had out at the time, which incorporated various wear and distress marks. Nata Kaupas is acclaimed art director in the industry, who helped bring the shoe to life. Early samples even had his own artwork stamped on the sockliner, but samples never officially hit production.
The “Takashi” colorway of the SB Dunk Low was a classic from the beginning. Made in conjunction with early SB team member, Takashi Hosokawa, the shoe’s timeless color palette made a return in 2018, however the original was embroidery with the phrase, “Family” in gold on the left heel.
NYC graffiti artist, Futura teamed up with Nike SB in 2003 on the Dunk Low. Utilizing a simple tricolor shading, the shoe would also become the first to incorproate three different materials on the makeup. It remains to be one of the most simple color palettes with a continued cultural cache.
One of the original SB silhouettes to feature a full suede makeup, the Hulk Dunk High gets its name from the various shades of green color blocking and was designed by SB team rider, Todd Jordan.
While they aren’t an official collaboration with Heineken, these Nike SB Dunk Lows ruffled some feathers after the SB division never officially contacted the Dutch brewing entity before before distribution. Drawing such a cultural cache amongst SB heads, the beer label continues to request that these shoes be taken down once listed on eBay.
For their second collection with Nike SB, Supreme decided to kick things up a notch or twelve, offering not two, but three variations of the Dunk High. Featuring crocodile etched panels on the overlays, each shoe exudes design elements inspired by luxury goods. The all-over star pattern seen on the sides was initially supposed to be a repeat Nike Sportswear logo, but that conversation came to a stand still pretty quick after legal reasoning would intervene. Nonetheless there are still a few sample productions out there that entail the original design. Lastly, the gold lace-locks are reworked with Supreme’s namesake and a bold font as a nod to the brand’s loud and proud persona.
Nike SB made history with their eBay Dunk Low that was created exclusively for charity back in 2003. The shoe was cut into quarters and ended up selling for north of $30,000 to a local Beaverton resident, whose proceeds were donated to the Tim Brauch Foundation and Skaters for Portland Skate Parks. While there was only one pair that was made available for bidding, another pair that was intact also existed, belonging to the late Sandy Bodecker, who was amongst the original Nike employees to navigate the SB division.
Limited to just 34 pairs, the Nike SB Dunk High “Iron Maiden” features the metal band’s logo and artwork throughout, while they even implemented a translucent swoosh on the side’s to ensure the entire album cover design would shine through. Made exclusively for Nike and Iron Maiden family and friends, these shoes have been renowned to fetch thousands of dollars – even as high as $15K on the resale market.
Only 202 pairs of the Nike SB Dunk Low “Paris” have been said to be created for a special art exhibition within the city itself. The shoe never officially released however due to so many people waiting in line, making them even more challenging for consumers to get their hands on a pair. Colette and Opium have been said to have sold the shoes at a later date, but what makes each shoe so alluring is that no two pairs are alike since the canvas artwork of French painter, Bernard Buffet has been cut and placed differently by Nike on each shoe.
As simple as it sounds. Phil Knight ran track and field for the University of Oregon and is proud of his alma mater heritage, appropriating the Ducks colors onto the shoe’s color blocking accordingly. Buck was also his nickname in college, which is the name embroidered onto the heel.
Often associated as having the most opulent suede paneling of any SB Dunk, the Sea Crystal colorway was conceptualized when Sandy Bodecker was scanning the seasonal color palettes in 2004, stumbling upon a tone that reminded him of collecting washed out sea glass as a kid along the beaches of Connecticut. Its application of pig suede textiles enriches the sneaker’s vibrant appearance.
This iteration of the Nike SB Dunk Low was the first of the acclaimed Medicom BE@RBRICKS collaborations, featuring the Harajuku brand’s renowned logo on the heel with a university inspired color palette.
The Nike SB Dunk High “FLOM” was designed in conjunction with acclaimed street artist, Futura to celebrate the opening of his store in Fukoka, Japan. Designed exclusively for friends and family and those that came out to the store opening, the For Love or Money Dunk draws inspiration behind the nature of the community at the time. Futura wanted to raise the question, “Are you involved with what you’re doing because you’re passionate? Or is it the beginning of people profiting in secondary markets?”
Commonly mistaken as For Love OF Money, Futura wanted bring awareness to what was beginning within sneaker culture by presenting two questions. Rendered with various currencies around the world, each shoe comes scripted with Futura’s signature font on the tongue, while the artist even made a skate deck with artwork to match.
Nike SB paid homage to their second PLM, Chris Reed, who was also from California with an exclusive rendition of the Dunk Low that incorporates the Golden State’s flag colors accordingly. Reed himself was responsible for the production of this colorway and since several other team members were also from California, it wasn’t hard to get support to back project.
Released amongst the White Dunk art exhibition offerings, this colorway commemorates the London stop of the tour. The heel implements an embroidered graphic of the River Thames in blue, while there were only 202 pairs total of the coveted silhouette to ever hit the market.
Ironic to the very shoe’s name – “Unlucky,” this nike SB Dunk High’s color scheme was not initially sought after. In fact it was even considered a consolation prize for those who were not “lucky” enough to score its counterpart from the collection. Constructed with suede and leather paneling and a black and red color scheme, this shoe even bears the number 13 on the toe to correlate with its hexed persona.
The Nike SB Dunk High ” “Lucky” gets its name from its monetary resemblant green and gold color scheme that dons the leather and suede makeup. The fortunate theme continues onto the toe, bearing the number 7 accordingly.
Another Futura masterpiece, the “U.N.K.L.E.” rendition of the Nike SB Dunk High is considered by many SB heads to be their Holy Grail. The acclaimed street artist tapped music and toy group, U.N.K.L.E. for additional inspiration, while including his signature artwork on the black and pink upper that includes the artist’s renowned characters – Atmos and Pointman throughout the design.
Primarily released as an Asia exclusive, the “Shanghai” offering of the SB Dunk Low symbolizes the temples and architecture throughout the city itself. The definitive logo on the tongue is said to represent good luck and fortune, while others claim it alludes to Shanghai in a previous era.
Before it was its own skate apparel and footwear label, Huf was a premier fashion and footwear boutique that was orignally based out of a San Francisco shop. Founded by Keith Hufnagel, this Dunk took inspiration from the SF Giants, incorporating the team colors accordingly with opulent leather textiles and tie-dye underlays.
With the White Dunk show coming to a close in New York City, Nike SB recruited Jeff Staple’s Pigeon Design entity to close out the final stop of the tour. Released at Jeff’s Reed Space storefront, the designer himself felt that nothing was more representative of NYC than the pigeon, which dons the heel panel accordingly. Though the White Dunk Show never actually made it to the city, that didn’t stop the duo from releasing the now coveted sneaker. Causing a riot to break out with police having to escort shoppers in and out of the store, it was long before the shoe was reselling for thousands of dollars and SB became a mainstream wave amongst sneakerheads.
Available in both home and away colorways, the Nike SB Dunk low “Rayguns” represents the figurative Roswewell Rayguns teams. Featuring team inspired color blocking, these vibrant colorways even come equipped with the signature Alien logo on the heel and has since become one of the SB division’s most notorious renditions.
The Cinco de Mayo Dunk Low utilizes the tones of Mexico’s flag throughout the shoe’s color blocking. Renowned SB member, Paul Rodriguez also wore them during his first ever X-Games win.
Nike SB came up with the Team Manager series in 2005, which consisted of four brands and five different styles of the Dunk.The Neapolitan iteration was Stussy’s take on the Nike SB Dunk Low, which leveraged the inspiration of Robbie Jeffers who was the brand’s skate team manager at the time.
The shoe’s name draws influence from the ice cream flavor itself, blending the hues that match the chocolate, vanilla and strawberry flavors accordingly. The cherry on top is literally a cherry caricature itself, which appears on the tongue tags, while a waffle cone graphic emerges on the insoles.
Before the Diamond Supply Co. business was what it is today, the brand founder, Nick Tershay was a skateboarder through and through. When a picture with him and the Tiffany Dunk Low first hit the Internet, it made waves across the world back in 2005, drawing not only the attention of skaters, but sneakerheads as well. The shoe continues to sell for north of four figures on the resale market today and its acclaimed color palette has not only been remade into a high-top rendition years later, but also three brand new colorways that also broke the Internet during the tail end of 2018.
Renowned London skate shop, Slam City Skates teamed up with Nike SB in 2005 to revamp the Dunk Low into an even more skate friendly offering that added cushioning in the footbed, rubber paneling on the toe for protection against wear, and a scratch-off swoosh that faded after heavy skating. Additionally, the insoles feature a map of iconic skate spots throughout the city of London.
Nike SB teamed up with 80s band, The Melvins for two different colorways of the Dunk High, which each featured an assortment of graphics from one of their more recent album covers. With skull and cross-bnes logos and the Chinese character for blood, these representations are synonymous with the genre of rock music that would soon follow the band’s influence within the Seattle music scene.
As a follow-up to their first collaboration, the second Medicom/SB installment has since become a staple collector’s item for many SB heads. Reminiscent of the Forbes Denim Dunk that released shortly prior, the shoe represents the unity between both streetwear and BE@RBRICKS’s affiliation for becoming a collector’s item.
Nike SB has become known for their eclectic music partnerships over the years. Their collaboration with hip-hop group, de La Soul featured a Dunk Low and High – both of which incorporated the artwork from their 3 Feet High and Rising album cover and have since become some of the more coveted releases from the Pink Box era.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the college Nike Dunk Highs, Nike SB continued the story with their skate specific offerings, which traded out the traditional leather overlays for a suede application. The schools featured in the collection include color blocking inspired by UNLV, Iowa, Syracuse, Kentucky, Villanova, Michigan, and St. John’s.
Nike SB teamed up with contemporary artist, Pushead to apply his signature artwork to the Dunk Low. The splotched design is complemented with a tag that reads, “cool charity,” implying that the proceeds from the release would benefit a charity of the artist’s choice. Lastly, the shoes came packaged in a custom box that featured the same artwork as the shoe.
Nike SB drew inspiration from Pele, the goddess of Volcanoes for the Hawaii Dunk Low to recreate the story of Hawaiian legend who caused volcanoes to erupt during feelings of anger and frustration. The fiery tones are complemented by a patent leather construction, as well as the big island outline that’s embroidered on the heel.
Renowned artist, Todd Bratrud that’s well-known amongst the skateboarding community recounts his early visits with Nike SB at Nike’s Beaverton headquarters was more like visiting an actual skate shop than it was a corporate megaplex. His first project with the brand was the acclaimed “Send Help” Dunk. Bratrud was already a fan of the Dunk and had been regularly skating in it at the time, so he knew which materials were most skate-able. His inspiration was simple – a clean colorway that skated well.
Mark Ong is a shoe customizer that flies under the artist name, SBTG. Known for his military inspired graphics and patterns, Mark took his designs that were catching the attention of sneaker connoisseurs by giving him the opportunity to customize the Dunk Low. The designer’s artwork and lettering is seen throughout, while he even added the tongue flap and reworked the swoosh with lux textiles.
Commemorating the Mexican holiday – Day of the Dead, the Dios de la Muerte edition of the Nike SB Dunk Low features a series of graphics inspired by the holiday festivities.
While they weren’t an official collaboration with the STAPLE brand themselves, the Purple Pigeon rendering of the SB Dunk Low uses the majority of the same color blocking as the iconic Dunk from 2005 that was was part of the City Series. Replacing the vibrant orange accents with purple, the shoe also forgoes Jeff Staple’ notorious Pigeon logo on the heel.
Mafia. Goodfellas, The Italians Pack. You know the names. These two Dunks are inspired by a series of mob motifs and Italian luxury design details, featuring patent leathers, pony hair textiles, croc embossed logos, and even a horn pendant that’s symbolic of its abilities to prevent the evil eye or bad luck in Italian culture.
The Taxi Series celebrates different cities around the world that have unique taxi designs. Paying homage to the city of Tokyo, these two Dunk Lows were complemented by by a Zoom Team Edition and the Classic which represented London and New York.
While Nike SB has offered countless skate specific styles over the years, it’s the Dunks that have developed an everlasting cache amongst sneakerheads and skateboarders alike. And one of the individuals that helped make Dunks so popular to skate was none other than SB team rider, Lewis Marnell, who has become synonymous for skating the “Wheat” colorway of the Dunk Mid.
The Australian skateboarder gravitatd towards the work boot inspird colorway throughout the majority of the Nike SB team’s filming for their Nothing But the Truth movie and have been recognized as Marnell’s favorite Dunk colorway.
Released exclusively at Nike Hong Kong, Nike SB commissioned designer, Michael Lau to design a special rendition of the Dunk Low that united sport and culture. The shoe represents the elegant finish of a woodgrain box, while the box itself also mirrors the same design.
These SB Dunks were made for pro skateboarder, Paul Ulrich and were the second pair of shoes to come out of the skateboarding division for 2007. Ulrich is also a well-known artist, adding multi-colored pinstripes to the heel with different textures of suede and leather overlapping on the upper. Lastly, the rough texture on the lace flaps is intended to mimic the texture of woodgrain paneling.
Drawing influence from Ace Farley of KISS’ stage boots, J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. essentially handed in a blank sheet of paper to the Nike SB squad for how he wanted his Dinosaur Jr. Dunks to look. Once released, he wore them on stage a number of times and all of a sudden, the Dinosaur Jr. band was getting recognition from sneakerheads who had never even heard of the band before.
Also known as the Money Cat Dunks, the Maneki Neko Pack from Nike SB was inspired by the welcoming porcelain cat ceramics at the front of Japanese restaurants. Each shoe in the collection features a small flower embroidered near the toe that also matches the print on the front left paw seen on the Maneki Neko stamped insoles. Believed to give good luck to its owner, the sculpture’s right paw is intended to attract money, while the left attracts customers.
The C&K Dunk Lows are from a collaboration between Nike SB and Dutch hip-hop band, C-Mon and Kypski. Each member of the duo are well-known skateboarders and were even sponsored by Holland skate shop, E-Zone. The group’s inspiration behind the collaboration stems from wanting to make a shoe that people who make music can relate to. Borrowing the color’s from their album, Where the Wild Things Are, while the head with a turntable brain design on the insoles borrow elements from the artists’ first logo. Lastly, the clear outsole implements SB and CK icons.
Nike SB linked up with artist, MF Doom on a signature rendition of the Dunk High, which features an array of nuances associated with the acclaimed artist’s style. Scripted with the artist’s signature DOOM lettering on the lace flaps and metal lace locks, this shoe also incorporates his classic artwork on both the insoles and translucent outsoles, while ostrich paneling on the toe, red laces, and 3M accents on the tongue round out the look.
A tribute to U2’s acclaimed track, the Bloody Sunday rendition of the Dunk High is constructed with red velvet paneling to represent the idea of blood, while both patent and leather textiles and an ornate gold trim complete the rest of the upper. Lastly, this pair came packaged in a silver box instead of the era’s gold renderings, as well as Nike SB scripted in a cursive font.
San Francisco based skate label, Heavy Mental first teamed up with Nike SB in 2007 on the brand’s Dunk Mid offering. The underlays and medial angles are accented with metal rock band caricatures and tour date outlines, while the neon green ankle strap is stamped with the phrase, Heavy Mental in a metal band inspired font. Additionally, there were only 666 pairs issued to reflect the metal band motif.
Attributing Guns N’ Roses’ 1992 hit, November Rain, this offering of the Dunk Mid features ornate details that resemble the song’s lyrics and music video that won them an MTV VMA award for best cinematography. The shoe also incorporates a rose embroidery on the tongue, while a graphic of a woman in a coffin is stamped onto the insoles.
Referencing San Francisco’s 90s EMB skatepark, this Nike SB Dunk mid tributes the Justin Herman Plaza Embarcadero that was notorious for its bricks’ red and brown tones.
Nike SB has paid homage to a number of musicians over the years, but only one has gotten multiple renditions of the Dunk Low and that’s The Clash lead singer, Joe Strummer. These two versions of the Dunk Low reference Strummer’s Fender Telecaster – the first showing the guitar’s initial state before being played, while the second shows the progression of the instrument’s wear after years of jamming.
In 2007, Nike SB brought their What The series to the Dunk Low. The shoe is formed with a mashup of some of the most grailed SB’s that had released up until then, featuring over 30 designs in one pair. Acclaimed design details stem from several Supreme Dunks, Rayguns, Hemps, Cali, a series of Medicom elements, Carhartts, Pigeons, Hufs, Avengers, Shanghais, Tiffany’s and more.
Todd Bratrud has had a number of SB collaborations over the years, but his personal favorite along with many of other Dunk collectors are the Freddy Kruegers. That being said, there were just a few trademark infringements with this one. Apparently it resembled A Nightmare on Elm Streetcharacter too closely. On this particular project, Bratrud states that it was “a big ask,” but the artist kept his head down and went for it. Everything aside, everything down to the insoles art is Freddy: his burnt flesh, his striped sweater, and his razor claw hand.
A small shipment arrived in the states, but never officially went to market because of the trademark regulations. In fact, the offering is so rare that Todd Bratrud himself doesn’t even have a pair – just two left shoe samples. The artist himself will even admit that there’s no denying what they were meant to resemble. Of course they’re Freddy.
The Gibson Guitar edition of the Nike SB Dunk Low pays homage to music brand’s iconic guitar cases that feature an elegant leather exterior, which makes up most of the upper’s design, while the fury pink sockliner matches the tone of the actual guitar case lining. Additionally, the gold swoosh and Nike lettering on the heel mirror the tones on the case’s locking fasteners.
Nike SB taps into Fenders music influence with a special rendition of the Dunk Mid that commemorates a certain bass guitar in the Fender collection. Featuring tan suede overlays and both white and silver leather underlays, the heel also integrates a cracked leather application, which slightly resembles the wear of a guitar over time.
Drawing inspiration from the 1987 video game Skate or Die, the Nike SB Dunk Low of the same naming incorporates the vibrant tones from the game’s artwork with a series of caricatures that mimic the nuances of the cover as well.
Incorporating the color scheme of the renowned Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Donatello, the SB Dunk Mid implemenets a series of textured suede and suede paneling onto the brown and green upper to represent the character and his shell. Additionally, purple accents appear on the laces and SB icon to match the TMNT member’s mask.
Nike SB teamed up with Barak Wiser of Skatepark of Tampa to celebrate the annual Moat race that’s held during the biggest pro and amateur skate contest every year in Florida. The shoe’s even feature a murky print inspired by the Floridian waters with diesel run-off and snapping turtle details. Lastly, the shoes were also extremely limited, releasing just 100 pairs.
2008 was a heavily music influenced year of releases for Nike SB, but it was the Appetite for Destruction Dunk Low release that spawned one of the more recognizable color interpretations. Borrowing the tones from Guns & Roses’ Appetite for Destructionalbum artwork, the shoe implements a mostly black suede and leather makeup with the noticeable red, purple and orange gradient from the album cover on the contrasting accents.
Mötley Crüe’s 1989 Dr. Feelgoodalbum struck a chord with the Nike SB team in 2008, applying the same tones from album cover onto the SB Dunk High color blocking. Featuring varying shades of green and red throughout the pebbled leather and suede makeup, the shoe also incorporates a scaly texture on the toe and heel collar to commemorate the snake that primarily runs through the middle of the album cover.
Inspired by the character played by Mr. T in Rocky III, the Clubber Lang rendition of the Nike SB Dunk Mid features a combination of white, baby blue, and gold hues throughout the design, which are representative of the boxer’s shorts and belt he wore in the ring against Rocky Balboa.
Drawing inspiration from one of the very first action sports video games called 720 Degrees, this interpretation of the Dunk Low mimics the Atari game’s artwork and colors throughout the design. The shoe also integrates the 720 logo from the skateboarding games, as well as a checkered sockliner, which is thought to mimic the pixelated graphics.
With the addition of 80s inspired rock band interpretations during 2008, Nike SB also drew influence from 80s movie posters. This particular rendition of the SB Dunk High references design details from the Thrashin movie cover. The webbed paneling on the overlays mirrors the design of the skateboard that Corey Webster’s holding on the cover, while the neon hits on the sockliner, outsole, and gradient swoosh reference the vibrant font color of the title itself.
Bueller? Does anyone know the inspiration behind this Dunk? Anyone? Anyone?
Inspired by the city of the same name in New Jersey, the Asbury Park edition of the Nike SB Dunk Mid features design elements that reference the city’s Ione Casino Skatepark. The colors are sourced from the Asbury Park Tillie mural, which has also been displayed in the Sopranos with its combination of teal and mineral yellow tones.
The New Castle offering of the Nike SB Dunk Low tributes the long-standing brewing company signature bottle color palette, featuring golden hues throughout the leather upper that mimic the beer itself, while red and blue hits appear on the branding to mimic Newcastle’s logo seen on the bottles.
Paying tribute to the red lobsters that roam frivolously around the New England waters, Nike SB teamed up with Boston boutique CNCPTS for an exclusive rendition of the Dunk Low, which features a speckled print on the red leather upper with a removable claw band around the toe. Additionally, the shoe also features a red and white checkered sockliner to symbolize the lobster bibs at restaurants serving the delicacy.
The Nike SB Dunk Low “Space Tiger” borrows inspiration from one of skateboard manufacturer, World Industries’ iconic skate decks, known as the Space Tiger. The underlays mirror the skate deck’s starry design, while tiger stripes and claw marks line the heel and tongue logo.
Nike SB’s Un-Futra iteration of the Dunk High is a color flip from a popular colorway that was made for renowned artist, Futura 2000 on a Dunk Low from 2003. Nike SB has continued with the “Un” series since the mid 2000s and has even progressed into flipping iconic colorways into either high or low-top iterations to mix up the nostalgia.
Reminiscent of thrashed skate shoes that have been makeshift repaired with Shoe Goo and duct tape, this colorway of the Dunk High features an actual scanning of duct tape patterns on the underlays and heel. Additionally, the shoe’s red leather paneling utilizes a cracked application, while the tongue is stamped with a red drip design that mirrors the Shoe Goo packaging.
The Boba Fett rendition of the SB Dunk High pays homage to the bounty hunter hired by Jabba the Hut and the Galactic Empire, appropriating the colors from the character’s armored suit onto the upper’s nubuck and leather paneling.
The Gold Rail colorway of the SB Dunk Low, AKA, the Melbourne’s are inspired by Flinders Street Station and Port Phillips Bay – one of Melbourne’s most iconic skate spots that has a gold rail. The shoe’s royal and cream composition on the canvas and suede upper are complemented with a brown midsole to represent the murky waters of the Yarra River.
Symbolic of the nostalgic Marvel Comics superhero, the Spiderman SB Dunk Mids feature a royal blue and red color scheme on the suede and leather upper to represent the character’s suit.
Nike SB’s Big Gulp offering of the Dunk High tributes the iconic extra-large cup option at 711, incorporating its red, white and green color scheme accordingly. The shoe is constructed with a combination of perforated leather and suede paneling, while also coming equipped with an extra pair of green laces.
Going along with Nike SB’s superhero themed offerings, the Batman rendition of the Dunk Mid draws inspiration from a DC Comics hero – Batman. The shoe incorporates a mostly grey suede upper with black accents and neon yellow hits on the sockliner and SB branding.
Nike SB first drew up a colorway that drew inspiration from the Fox network cartoon – the Simpsons for the Homer Simpson rendition of the Dunk Low. Several years later they would use the show’s influence from another one of the show’s characters with the Marge Simpson variation of the Dunk High.
In collaboration with Melrose skate shop, Brooklyn Projects, the Trickstar iteration of the Dunk Low was part of a two-part pack that also included a Blazer. Limited to just 600 pairs, this was part of the duo’s BMX Pack that was designed to commemorate the Olympics.
As a follow-up to CNCPTS and Nike SB’s Red Lobster Dunk Low that released just one year prior, the Blue Lobster was the vile predecessor that incorporated a toxic inspiration. The blue and volt yellow color palette draws influence from the sartorial storyline that the Boston boutique fabricated where blue lobsters were said to be causing havoc amongst the New England waters. Each shoe came bagged and sealed in HAZMAT containers, while the first 200 pairs came packaged with one of two different renditions of a CNCPTS x Alien Workshop skate deck.
Associated with the 1980s arcade game, Ms. Pac Man, this iteration of the SB Dunk Low features the vibrant color scheme from the game’s iconic character and the console itself, while the overlays are accented with a yellow piping that also the swoosh and Nike lettering.
The Un-Heaven’s Gate SB Dunk High is a reworked iteration of the Heaven’s Gate colorway, which ended up not releasing the year prior. The original black, purple and teal colorway was originally inspired a religious cult in San Diego that resulted with 39 members committing suicide wearing black t-shirts and new white and black Nike Cortez’. Its Un counterpart features varying shades of purple and navy on the suede accents, while the underlays and swoosh are contrasted with white and black leather paneling.
Referencing the Glen Quagmire persona from Family Guy, this version of the Dunk High features a royal blue suede upper that’s contrasted with a star embroidered quarter and heel panel to reference the character’s familiar shirt and pants.
In relation to the mascot of the 90s publication, Big Brother Magazine, the Nike SB Goofy Boy collection features a Dunk Low, a Dunk Mid and a Dunk High that take subtle cues from the Goofy Boy character, who also appears on the insoles of each Dunk.
China clothing label Fly came together with Triumvir’s Brandon Cheng, who got his start customizing sneakers for a Beijing inspired iteration of the Dunk Mid. Incorporating subtle nods to the city’s dust, noodles, traffic, highways and Tiananmen Square, this shoe also works in red and yellow hits on the sockliner and branding as a reference to China’s flag.
The Twin Peaks offering of the SB Dunk High reflects the 90s TV show, Twin Peaks, featuring a mostly black leather and suede upper that’s highlighted with green stitching and a blue owl character stamped onto the lace flap as a subtle nod to the show itself.
Even rarer than the coveted Blue Lobsters, the Yellow Lobsters by Nike SB and CNCPTS was rumored to only be allotted to a small group of family and friends – 36 pairs in total.
Skate artist, Todd Bratrud has become one of the more familiar SB collaborators over the years and the Brain Wreck Dunk Highs have established themselves as one of the duo’s more coveted offerings. Only releasing at select skate shops, these shoes featured a pink and grey color scheme on the suede and leather upper with BRAIN WRECK embroidered on the heels. Lastly, the insoles are stenciled with unique brain graphics with the interior sockliner resembling the actual wavy texture of a brain as well.
Created in conjunction with then, SB team member, Todd Jordan, the Bloody Gums variation of the Dunk High features a buttery suede application on the upper with vibrant red and teal shades that are representative of toothpaste and bloody gums. The translucent outsole is accented with a graphic that depicts swirled blood and dental floss to build off the tongue-in-cheek motif.
2009 was the year of original Nike SB team member, Gino Iannucci’s third Dunk Low colorway. His first two iterations appeared in the early 00s and have since become collector and SB head icons. His third signature coloring strayed away from the black and navy tones of the prior offerings, replacing the upper with white and beige tones throughout. Like his previous color palettes, this rendition also features perforated paneling on the underlays.
Following up a similar low-top pair that was produced in a quantity of 24 from 2005, this RESN x Nike SB Dunk High was one of the most demanded releases for the SB division in 2009. Still sporting the Gucci color palette, the shoes also incorporate subtly frayed denim overlays, while the RESN brand logo is stamped on the tongue in gold.
The Mr. Pacman rendition of the Dunk High follows up the Ms. Pacman offering seen on the Dunk Low. This rendering also sports the vibrant colors seen on the throwback arcade game, featuring a premium suede and leather makeup with yellow piping along the overlays.
2009 was the first year of producing a noticeably different shape on the SB Dunk Lows. The Anchorman colorway is an ode to the nostalgic Will Ferrell movie where he plays the infamous Ron Burgundy character. The shoe stays classy by drawing design cues from the news anchor’s eclectic suit selection, while the slimmed down tongue and heel feature a pattern that might be found on the lining of a 70s suit jacket.
Eric Koston’s signature Dunks are a celebration of the iconic skateboarder’s signing with the SB family. The Thai Temple Dunk Low and High celebrates Koston’s Thai roots, while the shoe is also part of one of the then newer Dunk designs that Koston help re-shape, thanks to his expertise in knowing what makes a great skate shoe.
The Yellow Curb SB Dunk Low pays homage to the taxi cabs in NYC, featuring a charcoal and black color palette that’s accented with yellow hits throughout as a nod to the common mode of transportation throughout the city. Additionally, this shoe was the third Dunk after the 2002 Supreme collaboration to feature the elephant print on the overlays.
Nike SB paid tribute to the Chrome Ball Incident skate blog in 2010 with an Urban Haze and Barley color blocking on the suede upper. The shoe features a scissor icon that’s embroidered on the lace flap to signify the idea of skaters cutting off the heel collars of their high-tops to make them more skateable.
Nike SB partnered with Neil Blender, the founder of the Chrome Ball Incident skate blog back in 2010. The shoe’s colors are inspired by the tones seen on the blog location, while the capsule’s high-top counterpart borrowed design nuances from the Airwalk Enigma.
Nike SB pays homage to Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA album cover, featuring an American makeup that features frayed denim overlays and red, white, and blue tones throughout. The shoe is also contrasted with red and white stripes on the heel to symbolize the American flag.
Todd Bratrud has helped Nike SB produce some of the most coveted Dunks to ever hit the market. Also responsible for the Cheech and Chong variation, Bratrud created an even more literal 420 interpretation with the Skunk Dunks back in 2010. Featuring a hairy suede upper with varying shades of green and purple throughout for an obvious representation of the herbed plant, the shoe is also stamped with a graphic of a skunk on the insoles.
The Larry Perkins SB Dunk Low draws inspiration from the fictitious skateboarding character of the same name that was notorious for making prank phone calls to Big Brother Magazine. The shoe’s Bred color scheme is complemented with a denim upper, while the sockliner is paired with a furry application.
Representative of the Marvel comic book character, the Ironman Nike SB Dunk High features a burgundy and yellow color palette that resonates with the hero’s armored suit. Like several other Dunks from this era, it also incorporates a double-layer swoosh application.
2010 was the first year the SB Dunk Mid removed its familiar strap around the collar. The Ryu colorway was part of the brand’s Streetfighter pack that took inspiration from various characters featured in the game. Designed with a primarily canvas and suede upper, the shoe features a cream, black, and red makeup that’s symbolic of the game’s character, Ryu.
Designed with a suede and canvas makeup on the upper, the Chun Li iteration of the SB Dunk Low features a royal blue and white color scheme that’s representative of the iconic character featured in the game, Street Fighter.
Drawing inspiration from the Tecate beer, this Dunk High features a red, black, and gold color scheme to signify the color’s seen on the popular Mexican beverage’s packaging. This shoe also incorporates gold lines on the underlays, which are significant of the box’s backdrop behind the Tecate branding.
Inspired by the unforgettable sweaters worn by Doctor Huxtable on the Cosby Show, the SB Dunk High features canvas overlays that are stamped with vibrant geometric shapes that also resemble the sweaters worn by Notorious B.I.G.
Nike SB is known for their beer inspired offerings. This Dunk Low borrows the familiar tones seen on the old Miller High Life bottle and packaging, featuring a green, black, gold, and red color palette with suede and perforated leather paneling throughout. The swoosh and heel also incorporate a bubble pattern that resemble the golden brew.
The Wu-Tang Dunk from Nike’s Sporstwear collection is among the most grailed releases of all-time. While the yellow and black hues have appeared on both Be True to Your School Dunks and SB Dunks, the colorway was also applied to the SB Dunk Mid in 2010, featuring suede and canvas paneling throughout.
The Roller Derby SB Dunk Low gets its inspiration from retro skateboards of the 50s. Teaming up with the Made for Skate entity out of Germany, this shoe features a white and Varsity Red color blocking with cracked leather and woodgrain paneling on the upper. A drawn image of a woman on an old roller derby skateboard lines the insoles, while the number 10 is embroidered on the toe overlays.
As an ode to the TV show, Eastbound and Down, the Kenny Powers colorway of the SB Dunk Low features purple suede overlays with a classic Safari print throughout as a nod to the wild graphics on the purple jet ski he was seen riding in the first season.
Artist, Todd Bratrud teamed up with Nike SB and Florida skate shop, Skatepark of Tampa for an exclusive rendering of the Dunk High. Dubbed the “Cigar City” rendition, this shoe tributes Ybor City, which was established in the 19thcentury by cigar manufacturers. The city’s main source of revenue became cigar production for the next 50 years, which is the evident inspiration throughout the shoe’s textured suede and nubuck construction.
Featuring varying shades of brown, red, and gold, this shoe also incorporates a texture that’s similar to a cigar’s paper when it’s rolled. A lesser mentioned anecdote about the shoe is that it entails a wear away component that’s meant to reveal another layer underneath after it’s been skated – similar to the Cheech & Chong silhouette that Bratrud also designed.
Similar to the Cigar City SB Dunk High and the Nike SB x Jordan 1 offerings, the Cheech & Chong is designed with a wear away component that reveals an herb-like texture underneath the white canvas paneling after skating. Unofficially paying homage to the Cheech & Chong movie, this Todd Bratrud designed Dunk also incorporates a bandana paneling on the left heel that’s inspired by Chong, while the red ribbed paneling on the right is symbolic of Cheech’s beanie.
Nike SB has a handful of Jordan inspired Dunk offerings, but perhaps one of the more iconic is the Space Jam iteration. This version features the same black patent leather paneling with the mesh inserts around the collar and quarter panel. Additionally, this interpretation pays homage to the earlier Space Jam offerings that featured the translucent gum outsole.
The Statue of Liberty SB Dunk Highs pay homage to one of the most famous landmarks in New York. The green leather upper is complemented with the Lady of Liberty’s head on the tongue tags, while a wear away application reveals a copper shade that resembles the landmark’s original color before fading to its current hue of green over time.
To celebrate the final season of the HBO show, Entourage, Nike SB created an honorary Dunk called the “Lights Out” offering. Its creator Doug Ellin is a sneakerhead in real life and one of his favorite silhouettes is the SB Dunk Low. Featuring a black leather and suede upper with an elephant print on the overlays, the shoe takes design cues from the character, Johnny Drama’s black Lincoln Continental.
Complete with various Entourage graphics on the insoles, this particular iteration would never release to the public, however a slight varied offering released without the insoles graphics and featured a gum outsole instead. Since it came without the branding, it was also known as the “Non-tourage.”
Nike SB has teamed up with Melrose skate shop, Brooklyn Projects on several iconic releases over the years, including the Slayer “Reign in Blood” variation. Featuring a suede, leather, and denim makeup on the upper, this shoe also sports brown, black, and red hues to represent Slayer’s third album cover. Cohesive with the band’s dark lyrics, this Dunk only released in 666 pairs.
Nike SB’s Passport Pack entailed two different Dunk Low offerings. This version tributes the look of UK passports, featuring a burgundy suede upper with a tumbled texture on the underlays to mirror the texture of the passes exterior, while gold branding mimics the lettering on the front.
Part of Nike SB’s 2011 Passport Pack, the US Passport offering resembles the look of the country’s US travel passes, featuring a textured navy leather and nubuck construction with gold stitching throughout to resemble the booklets lettering.
The Jameson SB Dunk builds off Nike SB’s affinity for alcohol inspiration on various offerings over the years. This color palette borrows the tones from the Irish whiskey bottle, featuring a cream and green rendering on the suede and leather upper that’s accented by red hits that mirror the bottles cap and lettering on the label.
Nike SB borrowed evident design inspiration from the villain in the nostalgic He-Man comic and TV series. The features blue tones on the suede overlays to match the character’s skin, while purple and black accents align with his cape and hood.
Nike SB has paid homage to liquor and beer brand’s alike over the years using their Dunk lineage. The Jägermeister offering features a suede and leather makeup with green, black, and orange tones to match the alcohol’s glass bottle and labeling.
One of the most anticipated quickstrike releases of 2011, the Tauntaun iteration of the SB Dunk High references the Stars Wars legacy with inspiration from the Empire Strikes Back film. Featuring Medium and Cool Greys with smoky accents and hairy suede paneling throughout, this offering resembles the creature that Luke Skywalker rides on the planet Hoth.
Supreme’s third installment of the SB Dunk Low followed up their 2002 project over ten years later. Still featuring the iconic cement print on the overlays, the shoe’s sport a red leather base with black accenting throughout. Though it’s not quite as rare as the 2002 offerings, nor does it fetch the same resale price, it’s still an essential for SB and Supreme collectors alike.
Another beer inspired icon, the Budweiser rendering of the SB Dunk High features a primarily brown suede upper that’s contrasted with a white tongue and red laces to reflect the iconic American beer bottle. Additionally, the tongue is stitched with an American flag to further align with the patriotic appeal.
Boston based boutique, CNCPTS has been teaming up on tongue-in-cheek collaborations with Nike SB since the mid 2000s. Starting as a high-end skate goods destination, their organic collaboration took to the SB Dunk High for the “When Pigs Fly” offering to pay tribute to the 1982 film, Porky’s. Featuring a pink suede upper with silver swooshes and a hairy suede application on the tongue, there was also a special rendition box for the CNCPTS store release with other promotional items, like co-branded tees and even limited edition skate decks.
Known as the Kozik quickstrike, Nike SB teamed up with artist Frank Kozik for a collaborative rendition of the Dunk High in 2012. Featuring a military inspired makeup, this shoe sports army green hues throughout the majority of the upper with orange contrasting on the sockliner, while ballistic nylon paneling lines the underlays.
Nike SB teamed up with Michigan based skate shop, Premier on a collaborative iteration of the Dunk Low. Drawing inspiration from the Petoskey stone, which is essentially fossilized coral that washes up on the Michigan shores. The shoe’s textured upper is meant to resemble the stone, as well as the grey skies that hover above the shores. Complete with icy outsoles and four sets of laces, these shoes also incorporate the stone’s texture onto the foot beds.
Nike SB builds upon their familiarity with applying denim to the upper’s of their SB Dunk offerings, like one of the Reese Forbes signature variations. These offerings were Hyperstrike and quickstrike renditions that released in 2012 from their collaboration with Levi’s. Featuring a raw denim upper, these shoe’ subbed out the NIKE branding on the heel for the renowned Levi’s red tab.
For their first Doernbecher offering, Nike SB teamed up with Finnigan Mooney on the Dunk High to bring the story of his strong heart to life. Having undergone 13 heart surgeries, the shoe’s outsole features a thumbprint graphic on the outsoles to represent him giving his parents a thumbs up before each surgery. On top of the yellow and blue leather upper is a hand-drawn pumping heart, while the phrase, “THUMP THUMP” is stamped onto the heels.
The Krampus SB Dunk High pays tribute to the European folklore of the evil opposite of Santa Claus. Featuring a shiny black leather upper with red midsole speckling and faux fur application on the heels, this shoe also features a graphic of the character’s head on the tongue, as well as an image on the insoles of him and Santa.
As a follow-up to artist, Pushead and Nike SB’s 2005 project that also utilized the SB Dunk Low, this rendition of the renowned skate shoe features an acid wash print throughout the majority of the upper. The pattern continues onto the laces and even features a bonefish graphic on the heel.
Paying tribute once again to nostalgic beers known around the world, the Guiness inspired offerings of the SB Dunk High and Low borrow design details from the dark beer and its beer bottle labeling with black and tan tones throughout.
Nike SB teamed up with Melrose skate shop, Brooklyn Projects for a California inspired offering of the Dunk Low. Celebrating the Walk of Fame in Hollywood, this shoe featured a black Safari print leather that’s contrasted by red suede paneling, while gold accenting lines the swoosh and Brooklyn Projects lettering on the heels. There was also a more accessible iteration of the same Dunk that released without the heel branding and BP logo on the tongue.
Nike SB unveiled the Space Jam iteration of the Dunk Low several years prior, so it makes sense that they would borrow inspiration from another coveted rendition of the Jordan 11. The Concord offering feautures a white mesh on the uppers that’s contrasted with black patent leather paneling to match MJ’s 11thsignature shoe. Complete with icy outsoles, this shoe even features the same cord laces, as well as the Concord hit on the bottom.
Partnering with Miami base skate shop, MIA in 2013, their collaborative Dunk Low draws design details from Florida’s tropical tones. Featuring vibrant shades of blue, green, and orange, this shoe’s perforated and smooth leather construction also features a wavy print on the heel that mirror the look of water.
Teaming up with renowned artist, Neckface, this iteration of the SB Dunk High features a black upper makeup with suede overlays and leather underlays, which have been scripted with the team rider names featured in the brand’s video, Chronicles 2 with Neckface’s signature lettering.
Nike SB linked up with DJ Clark Kent and Primitive on the SB Dunk Low for the 112 offering in 2013 as a Black Friday exclusive. This collaboration was DJ Clark Kent’s first official SB project, featuring a primarily 3M leather upper with cement print paneling on the heel. The eye-catching look is complemented with its use of Volt hues on the laces and outsole.
CNCPTS joined forces with Nike SB on two different Dunk High renderings that both applied ugly Christmas sweater renderings onto the uppers for a festive appeal in December of 2013. The grey version was the more accessible options that featured a grey textile that’s accented with a series of evil snowmen throughout, while the swoosh incorporates a satin finish. The black version was the CNCPTS exclusive that also came complete with special edition packaging that came in a tin tartan pattern box to resemble the packaging of Christmas cookies.
Todd Bratrud has established himself as one of the most recognized Nike SB collaborators in the industry. As a follow-up to his 2005 offering of the Send Help Dunk High, the Send Help 2 reworked the iconic color palette, while also working in some contemporary lettering, as well as other familiar Nike motifs. The shoe features a primarily beige and black suede upper that’s contrasted with a cement print paneling on the leather heel, while the phrase, “Send Help” is stamped on the back and on the tongue. Additionally, a skeleton graphic with a foam finger lines the insole.
To celebrate the 20thanniversary of the Skate Park of Tampa content, Nike SB teamed up with the organization and fellow team rider, Lance Mountain for a collaborative rendition of the Dunk Low. Despite having several signature colorways of the Blazer and his own Jordan 1 variation, this was his first Dunk that helped design. The shoe features a black leather upper that’s been tonally stenciled with a series of caricatures drawn by Lance, while the color palette itself is symbolic of the skate contest itself.
Nike SB has teamed up with Made for Skate a number of times over the years, but this was their first Dunk Mid project. The shoe features royal blue nylon paneling that’s contrasted with camo undertones, while the Made for Skate logo emerges at the tongue.
Partnering with skate shop, Uprise in Chicago, this Nike SB Dunk High features a red, black, and white color scheme that pays homage to the Bulls and Blackhawks sports teams alike. Featuring a suede and leather upper, this shoe also features a black and white skate scene photo with a quartet of stars to signify the Chicago flag.
Nike SB teamed up with San Francisco skate shop, FTC for a collaborative rendering of the SB Dunk Low, which celebrates 20 years since the shop released their skate film, Finally. The varying shades of blue on the suede and leather upper draw inspiration from the video’s movie cover, which was created by Del the Funky Homosapien of Hieroglyphics.
The McRad SB Dunk High celebrates skate icon, Chuck Treese, who was the first African American to be featured on the cover of Thrasher Magazine. The skater was also a musician and it’s his McRadalbum cover that inspires the shoe’s color blocking and design nuances. ’84 appears on the toe to signify the year the album came out, while McRad is also stitched onto the tongue tags.
Nearly ten years after the Diamond Supply Co. x Nike SB Dunk Low “Tiffany” launched, there would be another iteration for the sought after icon in a high-top offering. Sticking to the original black and Tiffany Blue color scheme, the shoe also maintains the Platinum swoosh and alligator etching on the overlays as an ode to the original.
Nike SB came out of the gate swinging for the fences in 2014. They kicked off the year with a primarily red rendition that featured a suede and leather makeup with gold accenting to match the celebratory tones of the Chinese tradition. This Dunk varies from most of its kind, incorporating a double-layering on the swoosh.
Similar to the storytelling medium of the Lobster iterations with Boston based boutique, CNCPTS, the Crawfish offering of the Nike SB Dunk Low is an ode to the tradtion of cooking crawfish. Featuring a speckled red texture on the suede paneling, the shoe also incorporates newspaper style prints on the underlays to tribute the way the delicacy comes packaged from the market.
Inspired by the 2004 variation from one of the most iconic state inspired releases to ever hit the market, the Cali Dunk High applies the same color palette from its low-top predecessor. Pre-the original 04 iteration, the Dunk had been appropriated with other US Cities and even other countries around the world. Their PLM at the time, Chris Reed was a California native along with several other members on the team, who agreed that the state flag’s colors would work well for inspiration on a Dunk silhouette.
Nike SB teamed up with Eddie Huang’s restaurant Baohaus for the Chairman Bao variation of the Dunk High. This shoe features a nappy suede upper that’s rendered in grey, while the midsole is contrasted with an icy blue midsole. The name of the sneaker itself is named after one of the restaurant’s popular dishes, while the insoles depict a graphic of the delicacy itself.
Teaming up with Michigan’s Premier store in 2014, the Northern Lights colorway from Nike SB emerged on both Dunk High and Dunk Low offerings. Featuring a black and charcoal nubuck construction up top, the shoe is accented with a tonal starry application that’s complemented with Solar Pink hues on the sockliner and a glow-in-the-dark Crystal Mint tone on the outsole to resemble the Aurora Borealis phenomenon.
Nike SB teamed up with Bay Area skate shop, 510 for a camo rendition of the Dunk High in 2014. Building off the design nuances of team rider, Brian Anderson’s signature Dunk High colorway, this shoe also incorporates a canvas upper with orange contrasting on the laces, 510 tongue labels, and midsole speckling.
Dominic DeLuca’s Brooklyn Projects label is no stranger to referencing California motifs when it comes to collaborating with Nike SB. Following up his Walk of Fame Dunk Low collaboration the year prior, the Paparazzi offering tributes the media that notoriously snaps photos of assorted celebrities throughout Hollywood.
Featuring 3M flash accents along the underlays to signify the flashing cameras of photographers, these shoes also incorporate a red velvet accent on the heel to tribute the red ropes that hold back the press from the celebrities. Lastly, these shoes are embroidered with a camera icon on the heel with the Brooklyn Projects icon worked into the design.
There was also another rendition of the shoe that was made available in wider quantities, which forgoes the rope laces, red velvet heel application, and the camera icon.
As an ode to the Georgetown alma mater that’s located so closely to Black Sheep’s sneaker boutique, they teamed up with the SB division on the Dunk High, while also paying tribute to Nike Basketball motifs. Featuring a primarily leather construction on the upper, the shoe incorporates university color blocking with navy and grey hues, while “NIKE” lettering is stamped on the heel, resembling the OG Nike Terminator accordingly.
As an ode to the Georgetown alma mater that’s located so closely to Black Sheep’s sneaker boutique, they teamed up with the SB division on the Dunk High, while also paying tribute to Nike Basketball motifs. Featuring a primarily leather construction on the upper, the shoe incorporates university color blocking with navy and grey hues, while “NIKE” lettering is stamped on the heel, resembling the OG Nike Terminator accordingly.
Nike SB teamed up with Black Sheep Skate Shop in 2014 to tribute the basketball nostalgia of the University of North Carolina. Applying the university’s colors on the leather upper construction, the shoe slightly resembles the Carolina colorway of the Air Jordan 1 that also paid tribute to MJ’s UNC alma mater.
Black Sheep Skate Shop has some of the most acclaimed SB Dunk collaborations out there. And the fact that this shoe was cancelled before its scheduled release just made it that much more coveted amongst SB heads and sneaker collectors alike.
The shoe incorporates the Gucci color scheme and design motifs throughout, this shoe while the all-over SB monogram throughout is a reference to Dapper Dan’s Gucci jacket that’s worn on the cover of Rakim and Eric B’s album, Paid in Full. Down to the wire before its release, it was cancelled due to legalities of trademark infringement.
As a follow up to Premier and Nike SB’s Petoskey Dunk Low collaboration the year prior, the Dunk High Petoskey appears with a cold weather ready design. Featuring a primarily wool upper for warmth, the shoe also incorporates an icy outsole and 3M reflective laces, while the Premier “P” is worked into an icicle styled letter on the heel. Additionally, the Petoskey stone print emerges on the heel panel, as well as the insoles.
Before Nigel Sylvester had his own Jordan 1 colorway, he was riding his BMX bike around the streets of New York with his exclusive SB Dunk High colorway. Known for riding in both SB Dunks and Jordan 1s, this shoe features a black suede upper with a metallic silver swoosh, a gum outsole, and a tonal Safari print on the heel as a nod to heritage Nike silhouettes.
Nike SB teamed up with the Acapulco Gold sneaker boutique in 2014 to commemorate a throwback Nike silhouette from the 90s. Drawing design inspiration from the ACG Mowabb, the shoe features a mixture of suede and leather paneling on the upper that are rendered in one of the silhouette’s most familiar color palettes. Complete with retro “AG” lettering on the heel, this shoe incorporates a pair of rope laces and speckled midsole for a retro appeal.
Air Mag colorways are anything but unfamiliar to the Nike range. Whether that be basketball, sportswear, and even skate offerings, the renowned grey and mint color palette that first shook Back to the Future Pt. 2 viewers in the 80s continues to have a similar effect when it comes to sneaker releases. The Marty McFly or Air Mag colorway of the SB Dunk Low applies the same color scheme accordingly. All that’s missing is the hoverboard.
Almost 20 years after Boston based skate boutique tapped into skate culture with their acclaimed boutique, they continue to link up with core skate brands like Nike SB to showcases their historic storytelling mediums that put them on the map. Part of the Grail Collection, the Stained Glass SB Dunk High draws inspiration from stained glass art seen all around the world, which translates to the paneling on the upper. Each shoe applied the artwork differently than the other, so that no two pairs are alike, while multiple layers of the translucent layering give these sneaker’s their stained glass effect.
Cohesive with CNCPTS and Nike SB’s Grail Collection, the Holy Grail variation of the SB Dunk Low features iridescent uppers with metal gold skull lace locks, metallic quilted sockliners, and mismatched red and blue tongues. 100 cement boxes and 200 wooden boxes were made available at CNCPTS Cambridge, while 300 wooden boxes were released at their NYC location.
After releasing the De La Soul SB Dunk Lows and Highs in 2005, Nike SB followed up their project ten years later to release the same shoes. This time the only difference was they converted both shoes into either high or low top offerings.
Bay Area skate shop, Atlas pays homage to their appreciation for photography on the Picture Perfect SB Dunk Low collaboration. Featuring tumbled white and black or all black leather uppers, these shoes tribute film camera bodies, while photos from Bay Area photographers, Joe Brooks and Mark Whitely appear on the insoles.
Minneapolis skate shop, Familia teamed up with Nike SB in 2015 on the Dunk High to celebrate their tenth year in business. Complete with a blue suede upper with yellow contrasting on the swoosh, and a blue ox logo on the heel, these shoes also incorporate a buffalo plaid lining on the interior.
The “What The” SB Dunk Low is considered to be one of the most grailed SB offerings of all-time. In 2015, Nike SB applied the same approach. Only this time it released as part of the Doernbecher program. Borrowing 42 design elements from previous SB Doernbecher releases, this shoe came encase with scrubs from the Children’s Hospital, while the box was made from the wood of recycled skateboard decks.
The Orange Box iteration of the SB Dunk Low pays tribute to the early packaging of SB Dunks that came in the classic cardboard boxing with the orange accents just like many sneakers at the time did. Featuring tan and orange leather paneling on the upper, this shoe incorporates a shoebox icon at the heel, while the insoles incorporate graphics of stacked SB boxes.
Symbolizing the second wave of SB packaging and the first SB branded boxes, the Silver Box interpretation of the SB Dunk High features a grey suede upper that’s contrasted with a green swoosh and laces. Additionally, this shoe also incorporates a shoebox outline that’s embroidered on the heel.
Celebrating the Black Box Nike SB offerings, the Black Box SB Dunk High features a primarily black leather and suede upper that’s contrasted with purple accents on the laces to reference SB boxes from 2006-07. Additionally, this shoe is stenciled with a shoebox icon on the heel with an ostrich paneling along the toe.
Nike SB reflects the Pink Box era of their packaging in 2005 with the Pink Box iteration of the SB Dunk Low. Featuring a pink leather upper that’s contrasted with black accents to reference the Nike lettering across the top, these shoes also incorporates a shoebox icon on the heel with a graphic of all the colors of the SB boxes on the insoles.