Inspired by the Japanese flag, the XII features faux reptile leather accents and quilted rays radiating across the upper to reference the rising sun. The XII was also the first Air Jordan to feature Nike Zoom Air technology, a lightweight but extremely responsive cushioning system. Tinker Hatfield returned to standard lacing, but incorporated metallic speed-lacing hooks at the top of the shoes, adding a bit of glam to the design. The XII was the first Air Jordan released under the Jordan Brand label.
Jordan Brand / Air Jordan XII, 1996–97 / Kosow Sneaker Museum (Electric Purple Chameleon, LLC) / Photo: Kathy Tarantola