Onitsuka Tiger


Eryn Behan

Steeped in history, with a reputation for bringing classic sports footwear to the masses as well as satisfying even the most discerning sneaker geeks, Japanese athletic company Onitsuka Tiger held their spring/summer 2011 press day this month. Ginger Trend Consulting for Mudpie reports.

Eryn Behan is director of Ginger Trend Consulting, the exclusive agent for UK trend forecaster Mudpie and its online platform MPDClick, and a provider of fashion forecast services and consumer insight trends to the fashion and interior design industries throughout Australasia.

First formed in 1949 by Kihachiro Onitsuka as way to “promote a healthy lifestyle and bring up a sound youth through the spirit of sport”, Onitsuka Tiger’s founder later teamed up with two contemporaries in

1977 to create the major sports brand Asics, incorporating the OT brand. Over the years, Onitsuka Tiger has become renowned for reworking past classics, creating shoes that stay true to their originality yet remain perfectly in tune with  contemporary fashion.

In the words of the brand, “Onitsuka Tiger’s spring summer 2011 collection comprises five exciting ranges each influenced by its unique Japanese heritage: Aisen, Okatabi, Midori, new models and the UK’s second season of kids’ styles, all of which include a number of innovative new products. The collections combine traditional Japanese techniques with contemporary designs and craftsmanship that have resulted in a unique, modern collection of Japanese footwear, tops and backpacks.”

For spring/summer 2011, emphasis is placed firmly on versatility; styles move on from being solely sport-specific, combining trend-led details to appeal to the leisure and lifestyle markets. The introduction of summer casuals to the footwear lines, as well as details including traditional Japanese split-toes and brogue-like perforations adds a commercial yet fashion-forward feature to the coming season’s offering.


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