Nike X Mo’ Wax Build and Destroy Collection

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Nike X Mo’ Wax Build and Destroy Collection

Released November 26 2014, the Nike X Mo’ Wax Build and Destroy Collection was designed in partnership with James Lavelle and included jackets, a t-shirt, cap, and two pairs of shoes.[1]

The Destroyer Jacket featured a removable patches and embroidery by artist/designer, Gio Estevez, wool body, and premium leather sleeves.[2] The t-shirts were made from 100% cotton.[3] The shoes featured a premium suede / canvas upper, vulcanized rubber soles, custom leather patch at tongue, custom embossed Gio Estevez designed text and Futura2000 designed geometrics at the heel patch, waxed laces, leather swoosh and detailing throughout, contrast orange nylon lining, and also came with a tote bag.[4]

A launch party was held on 25 Nov 2014 at NIKELAB 1948 in England. The event was streamed live online and featured DJ sets by James Lavelle, Nightwave, and We Are Shining featuring Charlie Dark.[5]


  • MA1 Destroyer Jacket in Black and Olive
  • Nike X Mo'Wax Blazer Hi shoe in Black and Olive
  • Cap in Black and Olive
  • T-shirt in Black and White

Press Release - November 21, 2014

From Nike[6]

NikeLab presents Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle. A capsule collection of restyled Nike silhouettes, this collaboration underscores Mo’Wax founder James Lavelle’s longstanding relationship with Nike and his penchant for sampling and uniting eclectic cultural influences. This rebellious approach is reiterated by the collection’s “Build and Destroy” tenet, which in Lavelle’s own words means to “make something and build it up, then move on to something new."

A DJ, recording artist and producer, Lavelle founded the London-based record label Mo’Wax in 1992, and the company originally gained fame for its counter-culture approach to creativity. Using cross-pollination as an artistic ethos, the label became a bastion of underground subcultures and independent music, championing experimentation and pioneering new genres. This novel method marked the emergence of a movement and Mo’Wax’s expansion. Propelled by its boundary-blurring philosophy, Mo’Wax and UNKLE — Lavelle’s personal recording alias — pushed collaboration across mediums, from music, art and photography to fashion, film and toys. The first partnership with Nike was to create the Dunk Hi Pro SB "DUNKLE" in 2004.

A decade later, Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle champions Mo’ Wax’s past and its future by adapting its renowned collage approach to iconic Nike silhouettes.

The Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle MA1 Destroyer Jacket is crafted from a classic collegiate leather-and-wool combination remixed with flight jacket-style details, including nylon at the shoulders and bright orange lining with a heat-pressed camouflage pattern. Graffiti-like embroidery and removable twill patches further customize the outerwear layer. A subversive take on traditional military decals, they feature the signature reverse script of longtime Mo’Wax collaborator Gio Estevez. These original patches present characteristic Mo’Wax names and slogans, such as “Your future is our past” and “Headz”. Stitching along the placket proudly asserts the attitude that drives Lavelle’s work: “Happy are those who dream dreams and who are willing to pay the price to see those dreams come true.”

The Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle Blazer presents a similar streetwear-meets-sportswear-meets-military aesthetic. Boasting the same tactile textiles as the collection’s jacket, the iconic sneaker reflects a cohesive mixed-material style at the same time it retains its signature streamlined silhouette, which Lavelle regularly wore back in the day and continues to sport. The Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle Cap and T-Shirt augment the offerings, infusing wardrobe staples with the collection’s trademark concealed symbols and slogans.

The Nike x Mo’Wax by James Lavelle Destroyer Jacket, Blazer and Cap are available in both black and olive, while the T-Shirt arrives in black and white colorways.

James Lavelle Interview

In 2014 Gwarizm posted the following interview with James Lavelle regarding the Converse collaboration.[7]

As far as the relationship between Nike and Mo’ Wax, how did that begin? I recall a CD back in early 1997…

Yeah, yeah, the running thing that we did. That was weird. I can’t remember what the hell was going on there — that was a really strange project that was. It really did not connect — I wouldn’t connect the dots between that project and creating a sneaker. To be honest with you, that Nike project, and if my memory serves me right because it was a fucking long time ago, it was done through a marketing company — an ad agency. We were always interested in doing things like that — I think the mad thing with that was that it had to be all new music and there couldn’t be any samples. That’s why it ended up being Richard File and Ils doing it.

How did the real Nike relationship begin?

At the beginning we all went out for dinner with Sandy [Bodecker], Mark [Parker] and various others — it was me, Michael Kopelman, Fraser, Giorgio and the guys from Nike. I remember that I had to leave very quickly because I was going to a Queens of the Stone Age gig. I was like, “Hi, nice to meet you!” And they were like, “What would you do?” and I just said, “An UNKLE shoe or something like that…” and it just seemed to happen. So Fraser and I met them at the same time —he wasn’t working with Nike then. Fraser was at Footpatrol then — that’s when the collaborations with them started.

So how did the new project come about?

I spoke to Fraser and spoke about the book and originally asked if we could reissue or do something with the Dunk — I was put in contact with SB and for some reason we didn’t connect. I was meant to have a meeting with some guy and that never happened. Then Fraser asked if I wanted to do something with him and he asked me if I liked the Blazer. I really like the Blazer — I like what Supreme have done with the Blazer. And he showed me the Destroyer jacket and we went from there. And with that collaboration, what I really wanted to do was not use too much of the old graphics.There’s camo in part of the shoe design but it’s done subtly. There’s inner-linings and embossing again. I like repeat graphic patterns — buying into that and repeating imagery in a classic sort of Warhol-esque way. So the Converse and Nike are linked but they don’t look the same — there’s recurring theme and the history’s there. There’s a bit of Ben and there’s a bit of me and a bit of Futura — a bit of Mo’ Wax in general. But the thing with Gio is that when we looking at placing logos on the Destroyer that has patches and stuff, we found the original ideas garish and it wasn’t something that you would want to wear. While this is a Mo’ Wax collaboration, I want these to be wearable. things — I don’t just want it to be for Mo’ Wax people and I wanted to wear it myself, you know?

What’s the concept behind the Nike project?

What is it about Mo’ Wax that we’re trying to translate in a shoe? It’s this kind of sample culture idea of Mo’ Wax being part of this generation and why people made the records they did. It was this sample collage generation. We’re trying to look at how to use these elements and do something different. So I thought it would be good to take this idea of sample culture and collage and build and destroy and all of these words that were asserted with Mo’ Wax, because there was a lot of wording on Mo’ Wax records and were on the advertising — I took the classic titling like “Headz”, “sample culture”, “build and destroy” and “our past is your future” and asked Gio to basically write them out and because he also writes backwards, again it’s sort of something where it’s not in your face — it just becomes textual but there’s a historical and a wording concept to it — so yeah, it was just trying to play with how you how you make a record and apply that to something else. The whole thing with the shoe was that there’s lots of different fabrics so there’s it has this sample and collage feel to it.

How did you meet Gio? That’s a relationship that goes back a long way, right?

I met him 19 years ago. He did work on UNKLE stuff and Mo’ Wax stuff. There’s a toy with him that never came out that’s in the book. It’s a skateboarder toy of one of his characters. He is one of my closest, most dear, best, best friends. He’s like my brother. I have of some of his work that he did for me on my arm. When you’re designing the thing I want a certain amount of connection to what we’re doing so it connects you in a way that’s subtle and justifies the work to me by giving it context.

Is the orange lining an MA-1 reference?

Yes. It’s very classic of that era.

Were you a big Blazer fan when it came to that model? You mentioned the Supreme collaboration but it also stretches back to the Glen Friedman images of Tony Alva wearing a pair. It has subcultural relevance.

Yeah. I’ve worn Blazers back in the day — I’m a fan and a I really liked what Supreme had done and I liked it because it was classic. I didn’t want a new tech shoe. I wanted something that I’d wear. I’d do a Dunk because it reflects the time or an Air Force 1 because those were the trainers that we generally wore but I wouldn’t really wear them now so I wanted something a bit more subtle. Build and Destroy repeats on both the Nike and Converse so there’s little links.

Do you follow the build and destroy ethos to some degree?

It was just something that me and Shadow used to talk about a lot when making records. Make something and build it up then move onto something new. It was always about trying to be new — it’s not about being negative.


See Also

Launch Party Event Details

External Links

Nike Press Release

Collection Mo'Wax Please

Olive Cap details

Entire Collection on SportsFits

Close-up images of collection