The Nike Air Presto is a sneakerhead cult classic - thanks to its uncluttered design, it's an ideal canvas for wild prints, like pixel patterns, tropical scenes and desert camo. More unusually, though, the Presto isn't sized like a regular shoe - 9, 9.5, 10, 10.5 etc. - but rather like a piece of clothing - S, M, L, XL.
The Air Presto's designer, Tobie Hatfield (brother of Swoosh legend Tinker), recently sat down with Complex to discuss the reasons behind his unusual design move, the story behind the shoe and its impact on the rest of Nike's running footwear.
What started as a sketch soon became a prototype in a size nine. I gave it to a tester who was a size 11, but I didn’t tell him it was two sizes too small. He came back after his first run and really loved the shoe, with no comment on the small size. When I told him it was actually a size nine, he didn’t believe me. This sparked an insight...I realized that maybe we could consider a “range” of size instead of a more exact “half-size” that was the current norm. T-shirts and other apparel are made with size ranges, so why couldn’t we do that with this specific shoe?
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