: 70s for a Modern Lifestyle
The weaves and is stylish enough to enhance any outfit. ’s classic with modern day influences. Marketed as the ultimate leisure , the offers a 1970s inspired silhouette with fresh fabrics and unique colorways. The 327 provides everyday
The debuted in April 2020. The retails for 100 USD, although certain special editions and collaborations like the STAUD 327 run for 150 USD. Inspiration for the : comes from three vintage 1970s The 320, 355, and Supercomp.
The 327 takes certain elements from these shoes to create a modern lifestyle adaptation of the brand’s running-inspired history.
basketball shoes and the lifestyle space. started as a company whose cornerstone market was . Over its lifespan, the company has expanded its roots with forays into
With the 327, once again reinvents itself. The 327 successfully combines running, lifestyle, and high fashion to create a that functions and stands out on the runways (especially whenever collaborates with brands) just as well as it does in everyday life.
The was designed by designer, Charlotte Lee, who started working at in 2014 as an intern. Lee started working on the in December of 2018, meaning the 327 took approximately 15 months to come to fruition.
The silhouette features pigskin overlays on top of a lightweight base upper, an only on the lateral side of the , and a studded that runs up the heel.
Lee looked to the past to guide her when designing the 327, especially the asymmetrical midsole, the fang-shape toe box, and the wrap-around, . The expansive is a nod to the 320, which was the first to use the now-iconic N. The is a nod to the 355, which was originally designed in 1977 to provide with better stability on trails. The lightweight upper is similar to the upper on the Supercomp, as well as other various :
“When I was looking through our archives, I was looking for things that were iconic and things that stood out to me as being different. Layering those elements together, created a that felt relatively recognizable to the consumer, but at the same time it was a little bit like, ‘Oh, I’ve not seen that before.’”
Lee knew she had a wealth of iconic 1970s designs to choose from. However, since many of those shoes are still being produced by , she knew she had to make sure the were different from the models it took inspiration from:
“When creating this , I wanted to make sure I was inspired by the past, but in a completely different way than was done before. I don’t want to create another that looked like it was from the seventies.”
One of the unique elements that was added to the and not to any of the retro was the distinct, inflated midsole design. Lee buffed up the midsole, resulting in a unique midsole that shows off the unique design when from the top or bottom. From a side view, though, the 327 looks like a typical midsole:
“By widening the forefoot and heel but buffing the arch area I created this asymmetric shape which when viewed from above was contemporary but when seen on shelf felt very familiar.”
All of Lee’s design choices merge to create a and for any occasion – whether that means a show, a casual night out, or working out. You can dress the 327 up or dress it down to meet your needs. There’s a reason this is popular and the go-to for everyday people as well as trendsetting celebrities like that is lightweight and comfortable with a stylish retro aesthetic. The is an incredibly functional that can be worn confidently with any outfit, and provides the perfect blend of Jennifer Aniston, Kaite Holmes, Timothee Chalamet, and .
As soon as the silhouette was complete, Lee and her team knew the had to be launched in a unique way. It was a perfect for the runway, and who better to bring a high twist to the than designer and his Casablanca luxury brand:
“As soon as I shared my designs with the team we knew this had to be launched differently. This model looked like it belonged on the runway and who better to launch it with than Casablanca? They loved the model and it worked perfectly with their collection.”
Charlotte Lee’s silhouette was officially revealed in April 2020 in with ’s Paris label, Casablanca.
Casablanca was launched in 2018 by as a way to bring his French Moroccan design to the masses. French Terry athleisure wear and graphic print silk shirts are staples of the Casablanca brand. is known for mixing luxury design elements with sports.
The and the x Casablanca , made their world debut during Casablanca’s Fall/Winter presentation at Paris Week in 2020. The was the first time Casablanca partnered with another brand. Announced days before the world had caught a glimpse of the 327, the x Casablanca created a sizable amount of anticipation to see what the two were cooking up.
Casablanca created two unique 327 colorways, using hints of Moroccan orange and vintage green tennis uniforms. Tajer also added a perforated white upper for increased breathability and a more sporty look.
The Casablanca Green features a perforated white leather upper with a forest green overlays on the heel and toes. The studded is green, and the giant is white with a green outline.
The Casablanca Orange features a perforated white leather upper with orange overlays on the heel and toes. The studded is green, and the giant is orange with a green outline.
During an interview with Complex, said the inspiration behind his colorways for the were 1970s Italian sports and vintage Italian sports cars:
“So the idea and the inspiration behind this is Italian sport of the ‘70s, and also a little bit of ‘70s automobiles, things like the vintage Italian sports cars from the ‘70s. For me, we wanted to go as far as possible from modern sports, and the modern way of designing sneakers, and we wanted to do something that is pretty timeless. I would say this is the grandpa , it’s the grandpa , like the cool Italian grandad . I like the idea of how the Italians in the ‘70s were having their own designs for sports, so I wanted to apply that vision to this pair.”
Tajer and Casablanca wanted to create colorways that would go with any outfit:
“We tried it with everything and, really, to be honest, this pair goes with everything. Shorts, denim, suits, tracksuits, it goes with everything. I mean, just try it yourself to see. It’s so easy to wear, it’s crazy. It’s like just everything works with it. It’s really exciting to have a pair like this. It’s really elegant. It’s a , but it’s really elegant, and that’s why I love it. It’s comfortable, too.”
Casablanca and : A Continued
The x Casablanca was a massive success for both brands. Casablanca’s 1970s influence perfectly complemented the . limited the supply of the 327 at releases, and the sold out quickly and was in high demand.
Since their first was such a success, towards the end of 2020, and Casablanca teamed up again to release two new 327 colorways. This time around opted for subtler colorways with Grey Pink and Cream Green variations.
The Cream Green features a perforated white leather upper with cream overlays. The studded is also cream as well as the giant N. There are green pops of color outlining the as well as the stitching on the heel.
The Grey Pink features a perforated white leather upper with grey overlays. The studded is black and so is the giant and stitching on the heel. The is outlined in white. The ’s tongue is colored pastel pink giving the mostly subdue a flash of color.
In 2021, the x Casablanca 327 returned with two more colorways: The Red Monogram and a munsell white/holly green.
The Red Monogram features a perforated white leather upper with a red and green Casablanca monogram pattern and grey on the overlays. The studded is green. The giant is made of red leather and outlined in green, complementing the hues found in the monogram pattern. While the rest of the Casablanca x shoes sold for 150 USD, the Red Monogram retailed for 190 USD.
The munsell white/holy green features a perforated white leather upper with textile overlays covered in a green and pink version of Casablanca’s Jacques monogram. The studded is green, and the giant is made of beige leather and outlined in soft pink.
The Casablanca x XC-72
Casablanca and continue to collaborate and have expanded beyond the 327 silhouette. In 2021, Casablanca and once again partnered up to launch another : The XC-72.
There are many similarities between the 327 and XC-72. Like the 327, the XC-72 was designed by Charlotte Lee. The XC-72 is another heavily textured that was inspired by a 1970s aesthetic. The same giant makes its way onto the XC-72, only this time it’s on both sides.
The XC-72 silhouette pushes the 1970s inspiration into uncharted territory. The has a time-warped design taken from the speculative technological advancements of 70s concept cars. The outsole is the defining characteristic of the XC-72, being split down the middle with one side having the studded rubber, octopus-like design of the 327, and the other having a more jagged texture. The heel wrap also utilizes the same distinct herringbone pattern as the 620.
The between Casablanca and once again results in a unique, stylish . One thing that makes this work so well is that both companies are interested in retro 1970s and 80s designs with a modern-day update.
Casablanca’s products are often inspired by, and pay homage to, the 1970s and 1980s, as well as sports, such as racing and tennis. Both the 327 and the XC-72 are modeled after vintage , but their sharp features add a modern, almost futuristic spin.
1970s are definitely a major inspiration, but the XC-72 also draws heavily from that era’s wedge sports car designs. Wedge cars were concept cars in the late 1970s and early 1980s that had sleek and pronounced lines and edges, and the XC-72 channels that aesthetic. Leaning into their automotive inspirations, the was dubbed a “Sports Car for Your Feet”.
When talking about the sports car design elements, said:
“From when we first started working on the , we dubbed it the ‘sports car for your feet’ as it evokes that feeling of when you first saw a luxury car as a child, you knew it was a car… but it was different to any car you’d seen before, it’s a feeling, a sense of wonder, designed to perform, designed to be special.”
The Casablanca x XC-72 dropped with two vibrant colorways. The Casablanca Orange Green pays homage to the original Casablanca 327 with a white perforated leather upper, a grey overlay, a green outsole, and the in orange and outlined in green.
The Casablanca Red Yellow features a white perforated leather upper, with a striking yellow overlay, black tire-like outsole, and a red N outlined in yellow. With the flashy red and yellow color scheme, it’s easy to see how Ferrari influenced and his Casablanca design team.
Both Casablanca x XC-72s were sold for 150 USD. The XC-72 typically sells for 120 USD.
327 and STAUD
Casablanca isn’t the only brand has teamed up with for a 327 .
In March 2019, CFDA Award nominee and founder of LA-based brand STAUD, Sarah Staudinger, teamed up with for her brand’s first foray into activewear. In 2020 and 2021, STAUD created two colorways of the .
The first STAUD x 327, the Grey Burgundy women’s only . The Grey Burgundy 327 comes covered in a white premium leather construction with grey overlays for a subtle contrast. There’s a burgundy leather “N” logo on the lateral side panel, a white midsole, and a gum finishing off the look. Highlighting the partnership is the phrase /STAUD on the lateral side of the heel overlay. , dropped in September of 2020. The was a focal point of the STAUD x fall collection and was a
The second 327 , the STAUD x Sea Salt Atlantic , dropped in June of 2021. STAUD dresses up the in cream and ivory upper, with a powder blue , and a dark blue heel overlay. The studded is gum, and the phrase /STAUD is embossed on both sides of the heel overlay to represent the . This version of the retailed for 150 USD.
Where to Buy New Balance 327s and XC-72s
Pairs of the and the XC-72 can be purchased from any major retailer in a variety of styles and colorways. You can find them at , Footlocker, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Finishline, Amazon, Hibbet Sports, and Champ Sports.
The retail for between 100 and 150 USD, depending on the of the and if it is a part of a .
The XC-72 retails for between 110 and 150 USD, and the price also depends on the and if the is a .
Past releases and exclusive colorways and collaborations like the Casablanca x and STAUD x can be purchased from popular resale websites like StockX, GOAT, Stadium Goods, and Flight Club.
With a plethora of silhouettes from the 70s, 80s, and 90s to choose from, it’s a mystery what retro-inspired shoes will come up with next, and what other unique collaborations will be made.