The story of the Nike Air Presto isn’t your typical design story, but a quest to create a shoe built for running, with the comfort of a house slipper. The story begins in 1996, when Tobie Hatfield (Nike Senior Director of Athlete Innovation) set out to meet the ever-growing demand of a running shoe their “feet didn’t fight” and were fit for purpose whilst looking stylish. The initial prototype was a size 9 trainer, featuring a revolutionary “V-notch” designed to suit the shape of the human foot for a better fit.
In a bid to gain unbiased feedback, his colleague was set the task of test running the original Presto, but what Hatfield hadn’t mentioned was that the prototype was actually two sizes too small for the wearer. What he didn’t expect was the surprised reaction his colleague had when being informed that the shoe was far too small. This led Hatfield to completely rethink the way we perceive shoe sizing, and instead applied the same approach we have to t-shirts, giving the customer a more universal range of sizes to choose from. This sparked the Nike team to market the product as a “T-shirt for the foot”.
The Presto had been put to one side whilst Nike focused on the release of other iconic designs, including the Air Gauntlet (1998) and the Air Zoom Drive (1999) which were the perfect testing ground for comfort and performance technology. The Presto design was revisited in 2000, when the team finally nailed down a stretchy material for the upper of the shoe; spacer mesh. This material had previously only been used in a medical context, but Hatfiled pushed for a material that shared the same stretch-fit properties as neoprene, without the insulation properties to allow the feet to breathe. This led the “V-notch” to be redesigned so the arching on the foot was less extreme. After struggling to come up with a name, suggestions were welcomed from the design and development team, and after 300 submissions were received the brand decided on “Presto” as the shoes fitted the feet like magic.
Once the design and the name had been signed off, the marketing team set to work on one of the most revolutionary concepts in modern sportswear; assigning an eye-catching illustrated avatar to each available colourway, then creating an animated short for each of the 13 colours. The tongue-in-cheek nature of these ads, coupled with memorable names including “Rabid Panda”, “Shady Milkman” and “Catfight Shiner” and high pitched voiceover used; the Presto was on everyone’s mind.
Since the original campaign, Nike has paid homage to these characters, creating the “origins” collection including a design with each character printed on the upper, as well as the “What The” collection in 2021 that consisted of a miss-matched pair with a different OG colour showcased on the various elements of the Presto’s structure.
The iconic ads didn’t stop there, with the “Angry Chicken” advert released in 2002 which features Parkour expert Sebastian Foucan (the first person to coin the term “free running”) being chased across the buildings of Cannes, France by a furious chicken. This was the first time Parkour was featured on mainstream television, and helped spark the massive popularity of the sport seen in the mid to late 2000’s.
Since the original model, the Presto has seen collaborations from high fashion to childhood icons, including a super rare Hello Kitty concept that never actually made it to mainstream release and was only produced 12 pairs for friends and family in 2004. Nike has been rumoured to be revisiting the design this year, with a large question mark over a release date. Other brands that the Presto has been reimagined by include the incredibly popular OFF-WHITE design by Virgil Abloh (2017) and lead to becoming one of the most sought after styles in his “Ten” collection.
ACRONYM (2016) put a technical spin on the running shoe by creating a mid-top sneakerboot hybrid with the addition of a side zip for added wearability, selling out shortly after their release. Perhaps the most heartwarming of the collaborations, was the 2017 Doernbecher Children’s Hospital Presto X, with a clean slip-on fastening decorated by three former patients of the hospital. Nike donated all the proceeds from these styles to the Children’s Hospital.
The Presto has a strong legacy behind it, and has no signs of slowing down any time soon. Shop the latest styles of Air Presto on Wellgosh, with two vibrant colourways to choose from and many more to come.
The story of Engineered Garments begins with it’s founder, Daiki Suzuki, reading early issues of the Americana-inspired Japanese fashion publications “Made In U.S.A. Catalog” & “POPEYE” in which westernized popular culture was heavily featured. The outdoor fashion section initially caught Suzuki’s eye, leading him to join a local hiking club as a way to showcase his mountaineering gear, although he was disappointed to find out that wearing his own clothes was prohibited.
Suzuki worked at a cycling store, one of his other passions, but soon saw his wages going towards less cycling gear and more clothing. The preppy, college aesthetic captivated Suzuki, and sparked his interest in American labels such as J. Press. He began to surround himself with like minded people, and was soon extending his interests to exclusive items only available from Tokyo through postal ordering such as the iconic Izod Lacoste. Seeing pieces created by such Japanese designers as Junya Watanabe pushed Suzuki to follow his passion, and in 1980 he began studying fashion at Saitama university. Unfortunately, the university didn’t live up to the experiences that Suzuki’s friends were having at Tokyo based institutions, and after a year and a half of trying to make Saitama work, he made the decision to fund his own education and head to Tokyo.
After grinding through 12 hour shifts with a printing company, he saved in order to study at Vantan Design Institute. Post graduation, Suzuki applied for a job at Beams as he knew someone that was already on the team, this however didn’t seal the deal and his application was rejected. Disheartened but not beaten, Suzuki found employment with a clothing and shoe importer, Union Square, responsible for surf inspired women’s clothing and Namsb, a menswear store selling the likes of Italian sports and casual wear giants, CP Company. It was here that he met Keizo Shimizu, a former employee of Americana influenced Japanese brand Van who convinced Suzuki to work at Redwood, a shop opened in 1982 with heavy influence from the clothing found in “Made In U.S.A. Catalog” which was a perfect fit.
Suzuki loved working at Redwood, finding himself more involved with the day-to-day operation of the store through his passion for the American-made clothes, which he was learning more about every day. Thinking practically, he soon realised that he had a lot to learn about the clothing, and decided to focus on opening his own store before chasing his design dreams further. Keizo Shimizu left Redwood to start the iconic Nepenthes store, leaving his previous position open for Suzuki, although after learning about Shimizu’s exciting trips to the U.S.A to source stock, Suzuki upped sticks for New York, San Francisco & Los Angeles on a three week trip.
Suzuki began fashion writing on his return, and eventually joined Nepenthes using the clothing knowledge he had built to buy stock for the store. Suzuki ended up spending half of his time between Tokyo and Boston for the following year and a half, sourcing and shipping products back to Nepenthes from military surplus shops, meeting and developing relationships with American manufacturers.
His success led to relocating to New York, and moving from purchasing vintage clothing to looking out for up and coming outdoor brands based purely on their natural pull rather than selling clothing based on the label. This changed the game for Japanese based stores and the way they bought stock, leading Nepenthes to pave the way for other retailers. Meanwhile Shimizu turned his focus to creating his own clothing, and after a legal dispute concerning his Hoggs brand, he turned his focus to the Nepenthes label and developing the iconic Needles.
Fast forward to 1998, where the growth in popularity of Nepenthes led to the opening of a New York store, stocking Suzuki’s original designs under the name Engineered Garments (a 19th century button down shirt) for the very first time. Suzuki then connected with New York based manufacturers, and solidified Engineered Garments as an independent brand in 2002. Engineered Garments’ success wasn’t instant by any means, but after a buyer for Bloomingdales had been convinced to view the collection by designer John Bartlett, an order was placed sparking an interest from outdoor clothing O.G.’s Woolrich. Suzuki landed the position of creative director during a collaboration between Woolrich & WP Lavori, seeing Suzuki win an award in 2008 through GQ for “Best New Menswear Designer In America Award” which allowed him to release a collection with Levi’s and gave Suzuki and Shimizu the confidence to open a Nepenthes store in the garment district of New york.
Through high quality materials, a highly skilled team of sewers and pattern makers and using specific equipment and industrial sewing machines, Engineered Garments brought together Suzuki’s influences of outdoor, military and Ivy League American aesthetics reimagined in a contemporary context and continues to stay true to Suzuki’s original vision.
For Autumn/Winter ‘21, the Engineered Garments’ collection features traditional utilitarian style drawing on technical details, including two variations of durable hooded cagoule shirts, a loose fitting all black Aviator jacket, heavy denim Explorer & Shawl workwear influenced jackets and a convenient and classy shoulder bag.
This season also sees packable raincoat originators and French outerwear kings, K-Way, collaborating with Engineered Garments to produce super technical jackets and accessories. Three of our hot picks of this collection include a classic bomber jacket, unique “Animal Print” camo Fieldie jacket with more pockets than you’ll ever need and a warm, longer line parka style jacket to brave the Winter. View the limited collection today.
Remy’s look from this installment of Wellgosh Wears fuses comfort and style perfectly, with some premium hard-hitting brands’ cosiest pieces this season. The water-resistant Munro jacket from Carhartt features a faux-down filling and minimalist design, setting a monochrome theme accompanied by the incredibly versatile Cav Empt Ziggurat bucket hat and ultra-premium Kirigami Easy Pants by fellow Japanese brand, Sasquatchfabrix.
This understated use of colour contrasts perfectly, with the head turning Nike Air Presto, a silhouette we just can’t get bored of, in a Wild Berry, Fierce Purple and Cyber Teal burst of colour. The overdyed orange Cav Empt “Ziggurat Ripple” T-shirt highlights the orange in the logo of the Carhartt jacket, and the synthetic cage of the Air Prestos, directly contrasting with the otherwise monochrome fit. Find out more about this outfit in the pictures below.
This installment of Wellgosh Wears sees our guy Dalian with a blend of timeless and contemporary statement pieces, working together seamlessly like ingredients to a Michelin star meal. The combination of the incredibly cosy Arch Hoodie from Pop Trading Co and the loop backed cotton Forest Green Track Pants from Nottingham based Universal Works could stand independent from the outfit as a nod to the classic skate look seen in the late 90’s & early 00’s.
Fast forward to the ultra-modern take on a classic skate shoe by AAPE By A Bathing Ape, showcasing the same signature camo that made its parent brand notorious throughout American hip-hop in the early 2000’s, reimagined for today’s world. Another Japanese heavyweight, Engineered Garments, are represented in this look in the form of the Indigo Bucket Hat. Their legacy of creating clothing with a strong influence from vintage American workwear and Military uniform is still very much prevalent, but can be tailored to any style as seen above. With the quick weather change we’ve seen this month, Dalian has come prepared with the PatagoniaTorrentshell 3L Jacket, with H2No™ water repelling technology and an eco-friendly recycled construction. This lightweight jacket conveniently packs down into it’s left pocket, meaning you’re not left carrying it around when the weather inevitably changes at a moment’s notice.
Dalian has accessorised with a must-have every day hydroflask, by camping & outdoors experts, Yeti. The Rambler Bottle with an ample 769ml capacity, is super durable and will keep your drinks cold all day. The shatter proof CHUG cap makes sipping on the go easy, perfect for the morning commute.
Shop the individual items below, and create your own unique outfit with Wellgosh.
This Autumn, Wacko Maria team up with timeless UK heritage brand Baracuta to create three of the most decadent jackets we’ve ever laid our eyes on. It seems only natural that the Japanese streetwear brand, obsessed with all things music, film and art would collaborate with one of the most prolific menswear brands in modern westernised history, with a reimagining of Baracuta’s original G4 and, perhaps most famous jacket; the G9.
The story of the G9 stretches as far back as 1937, when Manchester born brothers John and Isaac Miller wanted to create their own brand after many years of producing premium coats for high fashion heavyweights Burberry and Aquascutum. The company’s success led the brothers to joining a local golf club; a collection of Manchester’s social elite. Their time on the course inspired the brothers to design a water resistant golfing jacket that wouldn’t alter the wearer’s swing like the longline jackets of the time. In 1938, John Miller received the go ahead from Lord Lovat, 24th chieftain of the Fraser clan, to use their official tartan pattern for the lining of the jacket and thus, the G9 was born.
In 1950, the G9’s popularity grew overseas, with celebrities like Bing Crosby donning the jacket at their local golf club. The moment that changed everything for the Baracuta brand is when Elvis was seen wearing the G9 in the 1958 movie “King Creole”, leading “king of cool” Steve McQueen to also wear variations of the jacket in movies, photoshoots and more. The coat then gained it’s better-known nickname “The Harrington” after menswear retailer John Simons coined the phrase when a character of the same name was seen wearing the jacket on-screen for 60’s soap opera “Peyton Place”. Since then, this premium golf jacket has been worn by Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, Joe Strummer, Eric Clapton, Damon Albarn, Liam Gallagher and even 007 himself, Daniel Craig. The jacket has also been adopted by various subcultures, including the Skinheads and Mods from the 60’s, and was a common sighting within the 70’s Punk movement. To this day, it can be seen worn on stage by a plethora of celebrities and artists, proof that the popularity of this coat shows no signs of slowing down.
The Wacko Maria collaboration at Wellgosh boasts a velvet-feel animal print G9 jacket, reshaped to be slightly roomier with a more unisex silhouette. The jacket also features a traditional tartan lining, with breathable COOLMAX technology and an elasticated waistband and cuffs for a superior fit. This decadent jacket can be worn with, well, pretty much anything and make a serious statement.
The collab also features two timeless G4 jackets, in a versatile black or beige colourway. Both coats feature an embroidered chest design, with the black coat featuring a beautiful satin lining featuring a repeated print of intense, Japanese style tigers. The beige jacket has a unique skeletal snake design, and is definitely one for the detail fanatics. Both the G4 jackets feature an adjustable waist, a roomier, straight fit, button fastened sleeves and a funnel neck.
View the collection online at Wellgosh, and cop yourself some wearable art.
Following on from his hugely popular Adidas Originals Super Earths last year, 25/09/21 sees the next installment of the highly limited and highly anticipated Adidas x Sean Wotherspoon collaboration. This season sees Wotherspoon channel his love for the great outdoors into the new SUPERTURF ADVENTURE SW, a fresh spin on the rugged and trail-ready Response Hoverturf silhouette. The SUPERTURF ADVENTURE SW comes adorned with whimsical and playful details inspired by the natural world, with the vivid pops of colour and premium materials that we have come to expect from the designer and curator. A nod to one of our favourite characters, Jiminy Cricket, makes a welcome appearance on the tounge. What’s not to love?!
Sean Wotherspoon arrived on the trainer scene with his now legendary Air Max 97, which made its debut back in 2017 after winning the peoples votes in Nike’s Air Max Day ‘Vote Forward’ campaign. He has since used his platform to champion the need for change due to the impending climate crisis the world is encountering, becoming an unintentionable Peoples Champ, whilst not forgoing his ability to design great kicks in the process.
Peep the deets on his latest foray in the world of design, and sign up via launches.wellgosh.com for your chance to buy!
Wellgosh lifer Dan (he could have done time for murder, got out, retrained and started a new career in the time he’s spent on the shop floor) has compiled a look that mixes tactical versatility in the form of the Billionaire Boys Club climbing pants, with head-turning cold weather styles from the bold reversible patchwork fleece by the non-conformist Aries Arise; taking new-to-Wellgosh folklore fanatics Heresy along for the ride, in the form of a super cosy sherpa beanie. The lilac short sleeve tee from Aries ties this outfit together, showcasing the brands’ 90’s influenced slogan “No Problemo”, a recurring quotation throughout their collection. The kicks Dan has chosen here, the Vans Anaheim Needlepoint Authentics, add some breathability with their loose weave upper, with subtle yellows and purples tying in with the tee and fleece colour combo. If you want to feel as cosy as Dan looks in this outfit, check out the individual pieces below.
Wellgosh Wears by Wacko Maria, Evisu, Aries & Nike
Our store manager, Elvin, has put together a strong look for the back end of the summer in an attempt to tempt the sun out for one final hurrah before autumn fully sets in.
Elvin is a fancy guy with fancy tastes, and his Wellgosh Wears comprises of some of the fanciest stuff in the store right now. A perfect pairing of East meets West, mixing Japanese cult classics, Wacko Maria, with London’s trash/fash brand Aries, dressed up with a timeless pair of Evisu Seagul selvedge denim jeans.
Wellgosh Wears by Cav Empt, Brain Dead, orSlow, Nike and Birkenstock
As the temperature begins to dip, we have pulled together a transitional look featuring some of their favourite bits and bobs to hit the shop floor of late. Highlighting firm favourites and with a focus on quality and durability (I kid you not, most the items in this look might outlive the owner the quality is so good), but also dressed up with one of our morning brews in a mug with a message. This look addresses streetwear staples and shows off the humble hood and tee combo in all its glory; heavy in weight and heavy in style.
General Admission x Santa Monica Airlines arrives at Wellgosh. Born with community at its core, LA based General Admission lands at Wellgosh for Fall ’21, kicking things off with a homage collaboration with non other than Santa Monica Airlines, a brand that paved the way for the skate industry to follow.
General Admission (GA) is the brand you didn’t know you were waiting for; a relaxed outfit that oozes laid back Californian life approach. A company that shines a light on it’s community through a lens of optimism and humanity. With culture at the centre of its inspiration, GA produces great quality clothing for those that like their garms but don’t want a prize for the most outlandishly dressed peep on the street. The cuts are relaxed, the materials are hardwearing, the styling is top notch. It kind of reminds us of early Norse Projects, if Norse Projects had been designed for that Cali lifestyle. Subtle, stylish, sic.
Santa Monica Airlines (SMA) was founded by Skip Engblom, one of the forefathers of the LA skate scene, instrumental in the creation of the legendary Z-Boys. With GA basing itself in the heart of the Santa Monica district in LA, paying homage to SMA and educating the next generation of the brands place in the culture not only made sense, it was almost obligitary! The video below is short and super informative, give it a whirl, you’ll learn yourself a little something, and it’s always good to listen to the words of the wise!
The General Admision x Santa Monica Airlines collaboration is our first offering from the LA based creative output. Keep the peeled for future release; GA’s Fall / Winter ’21 collection is really nice, we’re backing this as one of the brands to watch, get involved now before you jump on the band wagon in a few months time. Wellgosh Love
ATMOS are pretty much patient zero when it comes to the spread of streetwear and trainer culture over the past two decades; the Japanese footwear retailer has been responsible for some of the most influential and sought after trainers to date, with the likes of the ‘ATMOS Elephant’ Air Max 1 topping many sneaker heads’ hit lists.
This season sees Dr. Martens and ATMOS join forces to reimagine the Tarik Boot, taking inspiration from the visual signatures of streetwear and the bold and colourful graphics of Japanese anime, this playful iteration of a classic DM boot comes equipped with all the trimmings.
To accompany the launch, the duo have pulled together some great illustrations to highlight the inspiration behind the design whilst doubling up as a left-field approach to a standard lookbook.
Peep the real life boot here and sign up via launches.wellgosh.com for your chance to buy. Releasing 21/08/21. Wellgosh Love indeed!
Carrots by Anwar continues to build a legume based legacy with another high profile collaboration, Freddie Gibbs. After notable releases with the likes of Puma, Grey Goose and Gudetama Sanrio to name a few, Summer 21 sees music veteran Freddie Gibbs enlisted to to combine his Cokane Rabbit motif with Carrots signature aesthetic in what appears to be the perfect pairing of minds.
Carrots by Anwar x Freddie Gibbs launches at Wellgosh 12/08/21 and kick starts our partnership with the brand moving forward. Keep em peeled for forthcoming collaborations, there loads of good stuff in the pipeline!