How to Tell If Nike Is Vintage

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Nike was one of the first athletic companies to brand and market shoes, apparel, equipment, and accessories. They have showcased their items on star athletes for many years. Nike is most famous for its Nike Swoosh logo and it has a revenue worth of $15 billion today.

In 1971, the company was ready to release its first product and they have never looked back. Vintage Nike is very popular among hipsters and collectors, and it is easy to identify. The company was founded in 1964 by Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman. It was called Blue Ribbon Sports and it was originally a distributor for a Japanese company.

In 1971, Nike introduced its first Nike product with the Swoosh logo. It was so successful that it gave the company what it needed to branch out into clothing and equipment. They continued to experience growth because their items were so popular. Continue reading to learn how to tell if Nike is vintage.

Look at the Tag

During the early years, from the early 1970s to 1983, clothing had a white tag with a blue “Nike” and an orange swoosh. If you find an item with this tag on the inside, it is vintage Nike. Collectors refer to this as the orange-tag era because the Nike swoosh logo was orange.

The next era of Nike was the first Michael Jordan era, from 1984 to 1988. When Nike partnered with Michael Jordan, the company exploded in popularity. The first edition of the Air Jordans was the most popular shoe of the entire decade and Nike released the ball with wings logo at this time. The tag in clothing was blue with Nike and the famous swoosh logo in white or silver. Collectors refer to this period as the blue-tag era.

Finally, the next time period is 1988 to 1993 and this is known as the second part of the Michael Jordan era. At this time, the tags were gray with Nike and the swoosh logo in red. In addition, the Jumperman logo was placed on all Air Jordan products. This logo is still used on modern shoes so you need to check the tag. Look for the red and gray tag that marks this period of time.

Examine the Materials Used

Another way to identify vintage Nike is through the construction of the material. The shirts are mostly a 50-50 cotton and polyester or cotton and nylon blend. They also have zippers on the jackets that are heavier and more substantial. Vintage clothing will not be made from some of the moisture-wicking fabrics of today.

Check Over the Design and Colors

Finally, you can review the design and colors of the clothing or shoes to determine that they are vintage Nike. Products from the early 1970s through 1983 were mostly primary colors with simple graphics. They would often include the pinwheel logo, which is very popular. This logo is a pinwheel made of Nike swoosh logos in alternating colors.

During the Jordan years, the graphics on the clothing became busier and Nike did more self-promoting. They started writing slogans on the clothing. Nike was trending and everyone was proud to wear it. Examine the clothing, and look for items that are loud and let everyone know that they are Nike.

Nike is one of the most popular brands in the market and people love to collect vintage Nike clothing. Nike has gone through some distinct changes over time, which makes it easier to spot their vintage items. The tag is the best place to start because there are very specific styles and colors for different time periods. You can also check the construction and design of the items to place it in a vintage time period.

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  1. How can I authenticate a Nike jacket? It says Nike Limited Edition with a tiny swoosh inside of the e. Can you give me some direction?

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