"" wondermomo: VISVIM (Japan) Folk Sashiko Tabi

Monday, October 17, 2011

VISVIM (Japan) Folk Sashiko Tabi

In the recent years, modern sneakers inspired by the traditional Japanese “jika-tabi boots have gained ground and following among progressive fashionistas, who adore the design as an exotic piece of footgear from the land of the noble samurais and cuddly Hello Kitties.
The latest label adding its own interpretation to this age-old footwear idea is none other than cult favourite Visvim, who is featuring the shoe in its Fall Winter collection.
The secret appeal of Visvim’s version of the jika-tabi, besides the proverbial separated toe which gives wearers a better grip, is the top quality “sashiko” fabric used to make the upper. Sashiko, meaning “little stabs”, started as a form of reinforcement stitching on points of wear or to repair tears. Today this ancient stitching technique is often used on Japanese martial arts uniforms such as Judo, Kendo and Karate - a testament to how strong and durable the textile is. In other words, you’ll be able to enjoy these cool kicks for a long time. (RRP approx. US$646 ~ US$978 / HK$4880 onwards)

Visvim founder Mr. Hiroki Nakamura with his creation.

Call them ninja shoes if you want, “tabi” actually refers to split-toe socks that have been donned in Japan since the 16th century. Made to be worn with traditional wooden clogs/sandals, tabi socks of course feature that separate space for the wearer’s big toe. The socks inspired the development of split-toe shoes in the 20th century and they were named “jika-tabi”. The purpose of the split is balance and a better grip: it helps the wearer to “sense” the ground condition, thus making it easier to stand firm. Till this day, jika-tabi are still favoured by many Japanese construction workers, gardeners and farmers.

No comments: