Bespoke custom sneakers have taken off in the past few years and there are still a few that are cut from a different cloth such as the crew at Foxtrot Uniform. Recently, we’ve caught up with them about their custom Air Jordan 1 for Caleb Plant which takes inspiration from a pair of custom AJ1s made for his Airness himself. Check out our Q&A below. This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
NK: How did you and Caleb connect? Who came up with the concept? And what was the brainstorming process like?
As far as I know, his agent Crystal reached out to us. We were stoked and later found out that Caleb was already a customer of ours.
NK: The inspiration came from the AJ 1 that Michael Jordan wore after coming back from a broken foot but you put your own spin on it with the eyelets and dubraes. What was the inspiration for that?
Crystal explained a scenario that it’s all about the “moment” where Caleb steps off the plane the camera captures his outfit. Sneakers are a big part of Caleb’s identity and he requested a pair of Chicago 1s. He wanted it to have a vintage sole like one of the pairs we had on our secret site and also wanted it to be in good shape. Thinking how small a pair of shoes were in a photo, we upped the game by suggesting a pair of Rehabs because it’s a Chicago but the straps and buckles were distinct. Caleb was stoked and agreed to it. He also requested for it to be fully loaded with Foxtrot hardware and accessories.
NK: How many hours did you put in to get this custom AJ 1 done? What’s the most amount of hours you’ve put into a custom sneaker?
This custom took about a week to finish, from sourcing, painting a little decon work and adding the strap. Hands-on work itself can usually be done within a day to a week but it’s the conceptualizing that takes a while sometimes. We recently made a pair of Frankenstein Union AJ1s with parts from 1985 Nat Greys and Chicagos combined. That took months.
NK: What’s the most rewarding part of working on a custom job like this? What was Caleb’s reaction like?
We love what we do so it’s always rewarding and each part of the shoe is done by different people so for a shoe to go out to someone like Caleb made a lot of people happy. The leather strapwork is done by my colleague who goes by the name Secondnatvre by the way. The last I heard from Caleb was when informed that we shipped it, he said he can’t wait! It was so close to the fight so we didn’t wanna bother him but later received some sick photos of them from his photographer.
NK: Anything on the horizon for you guys? What’s next as far as customs for Foxtrot?
We are always developing concepts and products that would impact the community, especially in the Neo-vintage spectrum. As far as customs go, we continue to build a world of Fictional archives where we adopt 80s ideology and make “What ifs” or Unicorns like the Rehabs that Caleb got, Kentucky Wildcats dunk that Virgil ordered. Next, we are working with Mercury MFG to build some 1984 Black toes with black tongues. It’s all so exciting!
Shoutout to Foxtrot Uniform for taking time to chat with us and follow them at @foxtrott_uniform check out their website at foxtrot-uniform.net. Check out the detailed photos of the custom Air Jordan 1 below.