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MR PORTER Explores the Backstory of the John Elliott x NikeLab Vandal Collaboration

A Nike superfan lives the dream
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Image via: MR PORTER

Image via: MR PORTER

In conjunction with its launch of the John Elliott x NikeLab Vandal High, online retailer MR PORTER has published a deep dive into the collaboration's origins. It begins with the L.A.-based designer describing his first trip to Nike headquarters in Oregon. "It was like going to Willy Wonka's chocolate factory combined with NASA," says Elliott. "That adrenaline rush was something I will never forget. They had to kick me out of there. I did not want to leave."

If the renowned designer sounds like a Nike superfan, it's because he is, having grown up as a Swoosh obsessive who sent unsolicited Bo Jackson shoe designs to Beaverton as an enterprising eight-year-old. As a teen, Elliott would adopt the Vandal as his go-to model. "No one else at my school had Vandals," he says. "They were hard to find. I just love the silhouette. It's a slender last, a slimmer toe, a bit asymmetrical. Of all Nike's basketball shoes, it lends itself to fashion the best."

Years later, he's living the dream with his own Vandal. Read the entire piece here, and purchase the John Elliott x NikeLab Vandal High at

For more Nike news, check out the brand's award-winning ad for the Air Max 2017.