New Balance “Explore by Sea” Distinct Collection

Every year, New Balance absolutely smash it out of the park with a pack, and I know it’s early on in 2016, but I’m ready to put my money on this pack being the best, or at least it’ll be up there with the best come year end.

We took a look at a few pairs from the Connoisseur Collection here, here and here, and if this collection didn’t do it for you, then let’s hope these four pairs from the Distinct Collection will have something for you.


New Balance are celebrating America’s history of adventure and craftmanship, and this particular Distinct Collection features a 997, 998, 1300, and finally, a 1700, with all being Made in USA, and each pair has an upper which has been specced with buttery soft suede, lush Horween leather, and Herringbone Twill.

Before we get into this collection, we just wanted to provide you with a run through of the full “Explore by Sea” pack, as turns out that there’s a few more pairs to the collection than we thought. Many stores don’t buy the full collection, so sadly, we always miss one or two pairs, but a quick bit of research on, and here’s the list.

The Connoisseur Collection features the New Balance 997CSEA, 998CSEF, 998CSAM and 1400CSE.

The Distinct Collection features the New Balance 996DCLP, 997DSAI, 998DBOA, 1300DAS, and 1700DEA.

Finally, the Bespoke Collection features the New Balance 997BEXP, 1300BER and 1700BAP.


First up from the “Explore by Sea” Distinct Collection, we have the Made in USA New Balance 997DSAI which features a predominantly cream coloured upper with brown Horween Leather and 3M detailing, finished off with an Encap midsole.






Here’s how the New Balance 997DSAI look on-foot, great right?


They’re currently available to buy from HANON Shop here.

Onto the Made in USA New Balance 998DBOA, and in our opinion this is one of the best colourways on the 998 in a loooooong time, that khaki coloured upper against the light brown leather is too good, and the little details such as the silver detailing and grey outsole compliment the upper perfectly.







You can grab the New Balance 998DBOA here.

Thirdly, and definitely the sleeper of the pack is the Made in USA New Balance 1300DAS which comes in a lovely bluey grey upper with brown Horween leather accents. It’s not uncommon for other models to be overshadowed by the popular 997’s and 998’s, but this 1300 is really good.






We usually find the 1300 a little clumpy on-foot for some reason, so we don’t tend to pick up many pairs, but for these, we’d make an exception.


The New Balance 1300DAS are available to buy here.

We got our hands on the fourth pair from this pack about a month earlier than the rest, but we saved them until the rest came in, so finally, here’s the Made in USA New Balance 1700DEA. Yes, a MADE IN USA 1700, now that’s something that we’re happy to see the return of.

On top of the fact that this 1700 is Made in the USA, New Balance have only gone and put one of our favourite colourways on it… burgundy!








If you thought 997 prices were high, then don’t click this link, as the 1700 takes the crown for the highest retail price (minus all the full Horween Leather pairs), but you can grab them here.

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