The Japanese love this classic sneaker design from Patrick; they never seem to go out of style. Although Patrick is a European company, their products sold here are actually made in Japan. Unfortunately this means that even a basic pair of Patrick shoes starts at around $125. Having once owned a pair, I can attest to their comfort and quality, but they do seem a tad over priced. The glossy pair in the foreground with the candy apple gradient caught my eye. They cost around $180.
Comparatively, Dragon Beard is a Japanese brand, but assembled elsewhere, and command a much lower price. Their everyday DB series sneakers start at around $50 and are a popular choice among young to mid-aged men. I’m not the biggest fan of Dragon Beard footwear, but the company produces so many variations of their designs that I probably could find a pair that I wouldn’t mind taking home. Maybe when summer hits.
High tops of all brands and styles are popular year-round in Osaka, but especially during the winter months when well-insulated footwear is a must. I can’t remember what brand these shoes were, but I noticed their ‘high tops’ could be zipped off when needed.
A rib injury has kept me from the gym these past few weeks, and has highlighted my need for a backup exercise when I can’t go kickboxing. As my cardio is not the greatest, last week I figured I’d try shopping for some running shoes.
The first shop I went to was INGS, in downtown Osaka. They have a great selection of sports wear, but when I paid them a visit, it was busy as hell and I got frustrated trying to hunt down available store staff. Fortunately, this held off my purchase, which brings me to this afternoon.
Today, I walked into the Umeda Step Sports store and found the Asics GT 2150 running shoe. This is the latest update to Asics’ best selling line of runners, and according to the girl working there, they were just delivered to the store this morning!
The last pair of Asics I owned were GT-2100’s, and I can tell there’s been a lot of improvement to the line since then. Fortunately these shoes are still reasonable, at around $100, which leaves a bit of change left over for a sweet tracksuit I spotted at Sports Mitsuhashi.
And now I need to stop reviewing shit and get some road work done!
After successfully conquering the world of high-end retro denim, by essentially pioneering the market, Osaka-based Evisu has gone on to launch an entire range of apparel, like these classy looking loafers that are on sale now.
Evisu shoes have been around for a few years, and were introduced as a means for connoisseurs of the brand to clothe their feet in the same laidback but stylishly rich look that Evisu is famous for.
Featuring perforated suede and an easy slip-on design, these Evisu loafers make transitioning into Spring/Summer a welcomed change.
Wearing white canvas sneakers with dark unwashed denim is never a good idea.
Thinking that I had washed most of the excess dye out of my denim jeans, I tried wearing them with these unworn Diesel shoes, just for a day, and look what happened – dirty blue sneakers!
God knows if I can gently bleach these babies back to their original state. Next time, I’ll take my time and tape up the insides of my pant legs or just forgo wearing white shoes altogether with untrustworthy denim.
Oh well, it is never a bad time to shop for more footwear. A recession just means more deals, right?!
Visvim is one of those Japanese fashion labels you hear about from time to time, usually in the context of superior handmade footwear and omfg $380 sneakers?!
The label was started by Hiroki Nakamura as a response to mass produced footwear from the likes of Adidas and Nike. It’s not that Nakamura doesn’t respect the accomplishments of these giants — because he does — it’s that he recognizes the demand for products that offer the exact opposite of what these global shoemakers provide.
In many ways, Hiroki Nakamura takes a surprisingly non-commercial approach to business, such as his unhurried and meticulous production methods, his refusal to design for any particular consumer group, and his ambivalence towards the industry norm of stitching logos onto every possible surface. In the age of massification, cost-cutting and unbridled branding, Visvim sticks out as awkwardly as it’s pronounced (seriously, is it just me or is there one too many v’s here?).
Like treasured artwork hanging in a gallery, Visvim shoes are made in their founder’s vision with a take it or leave it attitude. The stance has worked wonders for the brand as its core clientele, which is growing but still small in numbers, is hooked on a unique product with few alternatives in the marketplace.
It is said that Visvim is solely driven by Hiroki Nakamura’s quest for the ultimate in style, quality and comfort. And apparently, if that goal entails the centaur inspired mating of a running shoe with a moccasin, and charging north of $300 for the aberration, Visvim is up for the challenge!