I snagged this review from another site
I was crazy excited when Nike took control of the FFF merch, they’ve been gradually raising the bar on how football and fashion and I imagined they’d bring their A-game for a nation that’s basically the home of the highest of high fashion. So I couldn’t wait to see how Nike intended to meet that challenge.
My package included three items. The home kit and Nike Sportswear sweater arrived on their own while I was sent the press-edition for the more recently launched away kit – hence the swanky box. The NSW collection of gear was an early statement of intent from Nike that their sponsorship of France was going to be about much more than just team kits.
The home shirt is a wonderful example of less is more, I expected possibly an attempt to try too hard to be high fashion but Nike reeled it way back to a subtle but significant new blue and two tone collar. The sleeves were noticeably longer than an average kit, with reason…
A single star for a single world cup. Wondering what Nike Better World is? Here, I’ll make it easy for you to check out if you want to read about a bunch of stuff Nike is doing to try and do their part for the world/environment that probably not too many people know about. I usually get the “recycled materials” rhetoric on press days but there were a lot of initiatives on the Nike Better World site that I had no idea about. Credit where credit is due.
The collar button is actually really high, when the shirt was released Nike made a point of explaining that the details were designed to give players ways to customize the shirt to their own taste and you can open the collar up a lot or do it all the way up. I liked the feel of the collar, structured but not uncomfortable.
As I mentioned, the sleeves were significantly longer than I was used to from a football kit. Too long for my taste, but they did have a purpose which was to allow the sleeves to be rolled up to reveal the third colour of the FFF – red.
So as part of the customisation effort, a plain blue shirt with a collar can be quickly converted to have some seriously popping red detailing. I wouldn’t wear the sleeves down because of the length, but also because I loved how the shirt looked with the red sleeve turn-ups.
A navy stripe down the sides completes the detailing, the same navy used for the collar.
As has become the norm for Nike kits, the reverse side of the badge reveals a message intended to inspire. In this case – “Our differences unite us”. I actually didn’t even look that up, I’m just using my my powers of deduction. So if I got that wrong, feel free to let me know.
Now the away kit may already be one of my favourite tops of all-time. Nike went all out on the fashion spin with this one, partnering with Paris boutique Colette and brands like Yves Saint Laurent and Chanel on a collection of accessories inspired by the kit’s design. When have we ever been able to drop those brands in a conversation about a national kit? Like I said… A-game.
Nike’s packaging has always been great but their press versions have been amazing lately.
The kit pulls from the famous marinière striped shirt synonymous with France, sailors, mimes and the like. I thought it was a brilliant touch and one that could have been comical, but instead looks absolutely brilliant. I’ve always loved hooped shirts like Celtic or QPR, but can’t think of a lot of thin-striped football kits. I can’t wait to see France take the field in this and see what kind of new visual it creates out on the pitch.
The sweater was a nice piece, a bit of a boxy US-streetwear fit which made sense coming out of NSW rather than a more streamlined European cut.
One detail I really liked was a pocket on one side of the sweater that was completely hidden.
I’m a big fan of pockets, even on fashionable items, but I wasn’t sure how a pocket on a sweater would keep its shape when full. From my tests a single item works – a phone or a wallet – but any more than that and one side of the sweater noticeably hang. Not the best look.