NB Gallery 2 – NB1 Custom

Last month, I was lucky enough to get the chance to design two pairs of New Balance from the NB1 custom site, which you can find here. It’s taken some time to get round to shooting each pair, but first up, I’ve taken a look at “NB Gallery 2”.

Continue reading NB Gallery 2 – NB1 Custom

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New Balance 997DOL

I was just going to do a WOMFT post for this shoe, but my girlfriend decided to take some off-foot shots of them, so I figured I’d add some text, rather than just the 3 or 4 pictures.

Anyway, the New Balance 997DOL from the ‘Distinct Weekender Pack’ for Spring/Summer 2015, another one of the many 997’s which have released recently. I’m definitely not tired of the model, but I must admit, I am getting tired of the amount of colourways there are, New Balance need to slow it down a bit, especially with the high retail price that these hold, our money trees won’t allow 2/3 pairs of these every few months.

The ‘Distinct Weekender’ Pack is said to evoke memories of iconic waxed canvas bags overflowing with weekend essentials. Fair enough, if this shoe somehow evokes those memories for you then cool. I just think it’s a great colourway on a great model.

The DOL features a powder blue suede upper, with tan leather and a lovely blue canvas material on the toe and heel. The brick red outsole then adds a perfect contrast against the white midsole on this 997. The also have a waxed style lace set which were an absolute nightmare to lace up in comparison to NB’s normal laces but that’s minor.

These are getting put away for summer, banging shoe.

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New Balance 1300JP2

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We’ve known for a while now that 2015 meant the re-release of the beloved New Balance 1300JP, and I was wanting to write a nice article on it, however, NB Encyclopaedia Matt Kyte wrote an excellent piece called Mortgage The House and I’d advice you all to check it out.

Anyway, back in 1984, New Balance introduced the M1300, a shoe which at the time was one of the most expensive on the market, however, the shoe was a bit of a technological breakthrough, with extremely high levels of craftmanship, luxurious materials and the technology necessary for performance. However, even though the M1300 was brought in as a performance shoe, the Japanese seen no reason as to why it shouldn’t also be used for casual wear.

The M1300 original from 1984, M1300 from 1995, M1300J from 2000 and 2005 were only released exclusively in Japan, until the M1300JP in 2010 which was the first to be released outside of Japan. This year, the M1300JP2 will see a global release on the 28th of March, however, some stores in the US released the shoe early so we managed to get an early look at the JP2, and how exactly it compares to previous versions.

New Balance 1300JP2

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New Balance 1300JP2_3

New Balance 1300JP2_1

Image via Complex

The New Balance 1300JP2 is handmade in Maine, USA, and features a bluey-grey premium upper of high-quality nubuck and mesh, sat on a PU-ENCAP midsole and a durable Vibram outsole. The shoe has a plush leather lining, big original N logo, and a yellow coloured heel counter.

As with almost every New Balance shoe released these days, we all love to moan about the shape, and albeit, the 1300JP2 has a prominent toe puff, unlike the 2010 1300JP, however, this shoe should be appreciated for what it is – the best that New Balance has to offer, and boy is it good.

The 1300JP2 will run you $300 in the US, and £189 in the UK, and releases Friday 28th March. It also comes in women’s and kid’s sizes, which are available via New Balance themselves.

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New Balance aficionados love to compare the various versions of the New Balance M1300 from 1984 all the way through to 2015, and there have been various images created to compare the tiny differences.

Here’s an original advertisement of the New Balance M1300 from 1984;

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New Balance M1300 Original 1984 –

New Balance M1300 1984

New Balance M1300 1995 –

New Balance 1300 1995

Image via Up There Store and Sneakerfreaker

Check out the article in the above hyperlink from Sneakerfreaker and Up There Store, it has a pretty great comparison of the 1995 pair and the 2015 pair.

New Balance M1300J 2000 –

New Balance 1300J 2000

New Balance M1300J 2005 –

New Balance 1300J 2005

New Balance M1300JP 2010 –

New Balance 1300JP 2010

Here are some comparisons between 1995, 2000, 2005 and 2010 from CatWhy.com; the site is in Chinese (I think?) but I used Google Chrome to translate –

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Finally, a comparison picture from New Balance Korea from 2015 to 1984 (I will try to source a better copy of this) –

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LEAKS! – New Balance Autumn/Winter 2014

Following on from the last post, I checked out this collection back in April, and it’s taken a long time for some pictures to show up on the internet, but nevertheless, they did, so check them out below.

Again, we see more of the same from New Balance USA, but that pair of 1300’s really caught my eye, and I’m looking forward to checking them out in person. We also see New Balance sticking with some denim on another 1300 make-up.

Stay tuned on my blog for when more pictures become available.

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All images via The Shoe Game.

LEAKS! – New Balance Spring/Summer 2015

There’s been a few times that I’ve sat down and wrote a couple of pieces about ‘leaks’, but I’ve never actually posted one. It’s a touchy subject for all brands/stores together, and for people who initiate leaks when they’re not meant to that represent the brand/store, well, I can’t imagine they’d be in their employer’s good books.

However, it is 2014 and the world has been engulfed in social media, whether it be Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or whatever other social platform there is, so it’s pretty inevitable that leaks are going to happen. It’s not all bad though as the consumer love leaks, and that’s no word of a lie. There’s nothing the next man wants more than a sneak peak at an upcoming collaboration with a store, or a couple of their favourite models from a brand’s unreleased collection let slip and up for sale on eBay. It creates a huge amount of anticipation, and excitement amongst everyone and keeps them talking, which surely for the most part is good for the brand.

Anyway, that’s a discussion for another time, I just wanted a brief introduction before I let loose some of these samples for New Balance Spring/Summer 2015 Collection, which were advertised for sale on eBay and Klekt. This was a month or so ago and they’ve been populating the world wide web ever since, so this isn’t exactly the first time they’ve been seen.

So what’s in store for Spring/Summer 2015? I had seen various pairs from this collection a couple of months before they surfaced on the internet, and only a few had really caught my eye.

Made in USA –

More of the same, that’s for sure, the New Balance 997 is sticking around for a while, and although I welcomed back this model with open arms, much like the 990, it seems like it’s going down the same road – at least two colourways every season, and then throw in a couple of collaborations. The word ‘overkill’ springs to mind, I’d of been more than happy sticking with the grey and navy pairs, then maybe a couple more.

New Balance 997DOL –

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New Balance 997JNB –997jnb - ss15 sample

On-to the New Balance 990 now, and just recently this model was made available on the US New Balance site for customisation, so now the possibilities are endless – material choices are currently limited to just suede and mesh.

We’ve seen a lot of ‘Premium Packs’ if you must, with a bunch of standard NB pack names to go along with them, ‘Connoisseurs’, ‘Distinct’, ‘Author’, etc etc etc, so we will be welcoming the Horween Leather 990 very soon.

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New Balance 990BHR –990bhr horween2 - ss15 sample

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What more can we expect from the Made in USA side of things for Spring/Summer 2015? Well, the New Balance 998 firmly holds it’s place in the USA collection, along with maybe another 997, a premium 990 which looks really good, but the most exciting news about S/S 2015 is the USA Bringback Collection.

The USA Bringback collection will consist of the 990GRY, which you may remember was released not too long ago for it’s 30th anniversary, so if you missed out then you’ll have another chance to grab them. Along with that will also be a grey 998, possibly very similar, if not the same as the pair which Roadrunner Sports have been releasing for the last few years, and finally, the 1300JP (5 years since it’s last release), probably the most anticipated shoe from the USA collection.

Made in UK –

The Made in UK side of New Balance is my forte, but for the last few years, it’s all been pretty poor in my opinion, and that’s not just because of the shape issue, the colourways and materials haven’t exactly been up to scratch when you compare them with what Flimby were capable of pre-2010.

The usual UK models making an appearance, but not much to really talk about. A while back we seen some pics of the ‘Gentleman’s Choice’ Pack and you can see one of the 1500’s in all of their glory below.

New Balance 577SMO –

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New Balance 1500GMN –1500gmn - sample

New Balance 1500SG –1500sg - ss15 sample

New Balance 1500NAV –1500nav - ss15 sample

New Balance 576PGT –576pgt - ss15 sample

Much like the Made in USA collection, Flimby have also been working on some premium packs, and one of them worth noting, probably only because of the 1500, which is guaranteed to be a winner with everyone. The only picture I can share is of the pack in the colours of the ‘Union Jack’, the red 1500, blue CT300 and the tip of the toebox of the white 577.

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Once the pre-orders are up at all the usual retailers, I will compile another post of both collections. Until then, enjoy speculating, I’m sure more leaks/teasers will appear soon.

New Balance 997GY

Well, I FINALLY have a pair in my hands! After weeks of holding off and then being let down, a fine gent over at Crooked Tongues helped me out massively to secure a pair so I’m forever in his debt!

Anyway, I wrote a heads-up post over at The Drop Date so I’m just going to include that in here with a little extra, and as I’ve not actually had the chance to shoot them in detail so I’ll use the shots from Crooked Tongues, and then my own on-foot shots.

For many of us, we’ve been eagerly awaiting the drop of the NEW BALANCE 997 reissue and now, we can finally welcome back this sheer classic! This follows on perfectly from last year when we were lucky enough to see the return of the 990, but that wasn’t the only model that New Balance connoisseurs had been calling out for. Over the years, there had been continuous talk of NB bringing back the 997, but unfortunately, ‘no’ seemed to be a common answer and all rumours were quickly played down.

Well, where to start with this shoe? We’ve seen versions of the 997 in recent years, such as the 997.5, a subtle hybrid that consists of a 997 upper on a 998 midsole, but we’ve never seen the 997 reissued in its truest form, until now. The model that was first introduced back in the 90’s looks ever so stunning, and we’re sure that this pair will pull on the heartstrings of all NB fanatics!

Now for the details, and there’s a good few to take note of. The 997 is US made as this stays true to the original, and this means that the shape is exquisite. It features a signature grey-on-grey upper consisting of pig-skin suede overlays, premium mesh underlays and sublime pebbled leather. This great use of pebbled leather is also featured on the tongue and the shoe is finished off with a clean leather inner lining, which certainly gives that premium feel. Also, last but not least, there is some 3M thrown in on the ‘N’ for good measure.

One of the most important components of the New Balance 997 is the striking midsole, which features a duo of densities; fused C-Cap within the Encap sole unit, and a refined heel support. As this shoe was all about comfort, aesthetics and technology, NB have upped the ante by including a triple density innersole and also added XAR-1000 rubber to the outsole for increased grip.

However, one thing that many have come to notice is the colour change to the rear of the midsole, a slightly darker colour than the OG but something that we can definitely put on the back burner to appreciate this stunning shoe.

I’m not going to say much else except link to an article from Matt Kyte (Twizm) for Sneakerfreaker and if you know Twizm, then you know that this is 10000% worth a read.

Here’s the link for anyone interested;

http://www.sneakerfreaker.com/articles/new-balance-welcome-back-the-classic-997/

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New Balance 998CH – Made in USA

Well, I wasn’t really planning on picking this pair up, but after initially visiting Hanon Shop to vent my anger with regards to the pre-buy status of the New Balance 997GY, I didn’t want to leave empty handed. So, an obligatory “I’ll just try these on” turned into me having no doubt in my mind that these would tide me over until some time in February when the 997’s drop.

Since we first saw the catalogue and sample images a good few months back, there’s been a great deal of anticipation for two pairs of New Balance 998’s in particular, the pair featured here – 998CH, and a second pair, 998LL. The interest that developed for these two pairs is mainly down to the simple but effective colourways, and also the fact that the Made in USA product rarely lets anyone down when it comes to build quality, materials, colourways, comfort and shape, however, they do hold a pricey RRP for those buying out with the US – £155 in the UK.

The 998 is a classic archive New Balance running shoe, and this particular pair as already mentioned, was made in the USA for Spring/Summer 2014. This pair features a premium tonal upper of lush pigskin suede and mesh underlays, finished off with a two piece premium leather ‘N’ with white backer, and the trademark EVA ‘Abzorb’ sole unit, which makes for excellent comfort.

When it comes to grey suede and mesh, no-one really does it better than New Balance, and there are already a few similar style 998’s out there, however, the 998CH definitely warrants a place in amongst them.

This pair is available to buy at Hanon Shop now, and will also be available at the usual UK stockists this month.

Check out some detailed and on-foot shots below;

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