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Mel Shares How He Became A Nike Air Max Devotee

Interviews

Melanie Kwok
May 5, 2022

For Mel it all started with a pair of Air Max 1 OG Obsidian. His Air max 1 addiction further escalated when he bought his first grail - The Nike Air max 1 x patta "Chlorophyll.

All images via @air_mel87
All images via @air_mel87

Hey Mel, could you share a bit about your secret origin story and how you got started in the game?

I was born and raised in the Philippines. My passion for sneakers and streetwear started when I was in college - 2005. Back in the day, the biggest influence of fashion trends are rock bands, Skaters, and hip hop culture. I got hooked with Vans, Etnies, dunks, and Chuck taylors during my early days because of my attachment to Music and rock 'n roll. I wear these when I go to a concert and rock 'em hard!

I used to dig up pairs and find steals from a place we call "Ukay-Ukay" (A place where they sell secondhand shoes & clothing). I moved to Singapore in 2010 to earn a living, and my serious sneaker addiction ignited from there.

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Initially, I was a collector of Nike SB Dunks. From classic SBs to the most exclusive and sought after pairs and collabs. My SB dunks collection has grown up to almost 30 pairs in 2018. I left the SB game in February 2019 when the hype for Nike SB started. I've lost interest in SB dunks when I saw the hype that caused the price to rise up. For me it doesn't make sense to stay in the game if it is difficult to buy pairs. I sold all my SB grails, and decided to jump into the exciting Nike Air max 1 world! It all started with a pair of Air Max 1 OG Obsidian. I kept on wearing them at work because the colorway is easy to match with clothing. My Air max 1 addiction became intense when I bought my first grail - The Nike Air max 1 x patta "Chlorophyll and the rest is history.

What's your favorite pair of sneakers?

All the Air Max 1 x Patta 5th anniversary packs and the Atmos AM1 collabs.

@Ox Street Labs custom concept ‘‘Nike Air Jordan 4 x Jolibee” by @TheCyborgSamurai
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What drew you to this particular pair of sneakers?

My number 1 grail at the moment is the Patta x  Parra Cherrywood which I  have recently acquired. I never thought of finding a pair due to the fact that these are one of the rarest AM1s of all time. But through the instrumentation of my sneaker buddies all over the world, I was able to find them!

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The Air Max 1 x Parra Amsterdam is also one of my favorites. It is a very unique colourway with great materials used.

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What drew you to this particular pair of sneakers?

Classics. I love to collect sneakers that are unique, historical, and timeless. OGs are always the best! When it comes to retro running/lifestyle shoes, Air Max 1 has become one of the greatest sneakers of all time due to its timeless look, great comfort and design.

Your dream hype sneaker you wish to acquire but don't have so far.

Given a chance, I would love to have a pair of the Air Max 1 Albert Heijin. It is almost impossible to find and the price is damn crazy!

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How would you describe your personal style?

I'm a classic guy and almost wear plain and basic shirts plus old trainers all the time. I am more inclined with comfort and history over hype. Oh, I love to wear selvedge denims and pinroll my pants! European Vibe :)

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Where can people find you on social media?

Checkout and follow me on instagram https://www.instagram.com/air_mel87 for more sneaker maddness!

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From all of us at Ox Street, Asia’s premier sneaker and streetwear marketplace, hope you’ve had a chance to savor more of the chicken joy from Jolibee in person, now that corona lockdown rules across many cities have been relaxed.

Do you have a sneaker collection that you wish to showcase or share with the world? Or maybe you have some hyped deadstock that you wish to sell. Join Ox Street as an early community member in our beta stage today and get $25 SGD off your first order (while discount slots last).

Melanie is a contemporary art enthusiast, writer and cultural research strategist whose practice explores the areas inbetween art, design, commerce and the cult of collecting.