words // Nick DePaula
For almost twenty years now, Penny Hardaway has had one of the most beloved signature sneaker lines. His 1990's series that first featured the iconic "1 Cent" logo was designed by Eric Avar, and incorporated flowing design lines, bold color blocks and sharp accents of the Orlando Magic's vivid Atlantic Blue hue to round things out. They were each amazing sneakers originally, and whether it's the Penny 1, 2 or the Foamposite, they've stood the test of time and become classics all these years later under the Nike Sportswear umbrella.
As the current Design Lead for NSW over the past seven years, Marc Dolce has looked to reinvigorate the frenzy around Penny's signature line through the lens of "new creation." The Half Cent stood out among the rest of the hybrid era models when it released in 2009, and two years later, the Zoom Rookie celebrated each of the shoes that Penny wore before receiving his own signature shoe, like the Air Up, Go LWP and Flight One.
Now, Dolce and Sportswear are at it again, paying tribute to Hardaway's alter ego Lil Penny with a follow-up to the Half Cent. Cleanly dubbed the Lil Penny Posite, the shoe drafts off of the bold colorblock and wavy flow of the Air Up, features a double-lasted Foamposite construction similar to the Zoom Rookie, along with several details particular to Lil Penny.
"The goal for the project was to move the Penny collection into a new space," describes Dolce. "Inspired from the past lineage, but designed for the future. It’s about the blend between lifestyle and sport and creating a silhouette that is sleeker and more refined."
Check out several of Dolce's sketches and renderings for the Lil Penny Posite below, and look for the shoe to be launching next Saturday, May 17th in a 2-shoe "Shooting Stars Pack" with the Foamposite One.