There’s still a chance to own a piece of history.
Two heritage American companies, Levi’s and New Balance, have teamed up to create a sneaker made with denim from the now shuttered White Oak Mills in Greensboro, N.C.
The Levi’s x New Balance 1300 sneaker features limited-edition White Oak XX52 denim from Levi’s deadstock inventory and a muted orange palette. Dark-wash denim appears along the toe box and at strategic spots along the sides of the shoe. Muted orange suede covers the rest of the sneaker.
The co-branded sneaker includes a white stripe along the sole and matching laces, as well as a bright orange N logo on the outer body. The Levi’s tag—in the same shade of orange—is placed directly above it.
After 112 years of continuous selvedge denim production, in 2017 Cone’s shut down its storied White Oak plant, a major supplier to U.S.-made denim brands and the foundation for several Levi’s special collections.
The NB 1300 style was chosen for its 35-year history that’s still popular today, tapping into the nostalgia trend that’s having designers from all apparel categories bringing back iconic styles from the archives. The limited-edition shoe will be available through Levi’s, New Balance and select wholesale partners starting March 26 and will retail for $200.
This month, New Balance will debut another denim sneaker, the 997 Elevated Basics, to its European customers. The shoe mixes denim with leather and suede components, with touches of stonewashed denim in the toebox and heel, and tumbled brown leather surrounding it. Last year delivered a number of denim sneakers, including styles from Virgil Abloh, Nike and Converse, and inspired collaborations with Kith, Coca-Cola, 3×1 and others. Levi’s got in on the trend with its own contribution to the denim sneaker movement, including a Levi’s x Air Jordan 4 collaboration in 2018.