Celebrating design origins: Nike Cortez 'Shoe Dog' pack

Many of those who have read Phil Knight’s seminal biography ‘Shoe Dog’, or die-hard Nike fans are well versed in the history behind the creation of Nike’s iconic trademark Swoosh logo. This is something for Nike fans to get excited about.

Dropping on the 24th of July, Nike’s ‘Shoe Dog’ pack is an ode to Phil Knight’s genius creation that is the Nike logo and his first-ever track shoe, 47 years after its invention. Before the release of the Cortez in 1973, with the assistance of Knight, Onitsuka Tiger had coined the term ‘Swoosh’ fiber, a material made from nylon resin woven through the upper of the Tiger ‘Marathon’ shoe. This term would foreshadow the legacy to come from Nike’s iconic Swoosh logo.

By 1971 partners Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman found themselves detached from the constraints of Japanese footwear giant Onitsuka Tiger. Finally free to claim the copyrighted name ‘Cortez’ exclusively from Onitsuka, the Nike Cortez ’72 was released into the public and marketed as a marathon running shoe. Nike’s first endorsed pro-athlete Steve Prefontaine wore it in 1973.

As a landmark in Nike’s history as the first shoe to feature the Swoosh across upper of the shoe, the Shoe Dog pack pays respect to the moments leading up to the creation of this iconic sneaker through celebrating the first design concepts behind the Swoosh logo.


The ‘Dimension Six’ was coined and designed early on by Phil Knight and remained his first choice through Nike’s production origins. The Dimension Six features a minimal design with a large diagonal stripe across the upper of the shoe in Game Royal and a University red moon circle in the center with surrounding ‘dimension six’ text.


The 'Speedy Peregrine’ is the most unique of the whole pack, it features an embroidered Peregrine Falcon on the lateral side of the sneakers and looks although it was designed to look like it is in motion. It features the title Flacon’ in yellow text and is a nod early alternate names for the brand.

The ‘Slim Swoosh’ is the most similar to the Nike Swoosh that we see today. The Slim Swoosh was originally designed by early Blue Ribbon Sports inc. employee Carolyn Davidson and forms the perfect partnership between Knight's inspiration from the Greek Goddess of Victory ‘Nike’, and influence from Onitsuka Tigers ‘Swoosh’ fiber.

The Shoe Dog pack will be releasing online on the 24th of July at 12 AM with limited stock available.

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