Up Close With nonnative's New Balance 996 Collaboration

Understated neutral tones for a retro touch.

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Footwear
5,887 Hypes 2 Comments

Following a recent KITH team-up, nonnative delivers another remixed New Balance silhouette. This time, the CM996 is the model of choice, receiving a vintage-inspired makeover with plenty of thoughtful details.

Part of the Japan-only “996 Collaboration Project,” nonnative and New Balance’s joint effort is more than a mere makeover, as the classic runner has been given a complete overhaul. The result is what nonnative designer Takayuki Fujii describes as a “brand new 996.”

Specifically, the medial side “N” logo has been swapped for a small embroidered iteration, and, in an effort to make the shoe look like a well-loved pair from the ’80s, Fujii applied plush suede to the upper and a faux yellowing treatment to the midsole. Finally, taking the term “streetwear” literally, Fujii took cues from Japanese roads to give the shoe a grey palette, complete with a concrete pattern on the insole, and completed the redesign by adding elastic gussets to the tongue, meaning that the shoe can be worn with the shoelaces removed.

nonnative’s collaborative New Balance CM996 will be available via COVERCHORD, vendor and other Japanese retailers on July 27.

Elsewhere, nonnative recently teamed up with Outdoor Projects for seasonal backpacks.

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nonnative x New Balance CM996

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