Denim for sneakers is not a new idea. Most of the denims used for sport shoes have been the regular cloth we see in jeans. They could be raw, bleached, or distressed, but they have not been given a treatment such as these on the Asics Gel Lyte V, a reiteration using Japanese textile, proudly declared on a fabric hang tag that’s secured to the shoe’s eyelet.
Strictly speaking, this isn’t quite denim (it looks more like Oxford to us), but the twill weave and the blue is extremely similar. When paired with a pair of denim jeans, the kindred spirit is inescapable. What makes it unusual is the floral pattern interwoven into the fabric, a treatment also seen in the same shoe model released as “Bamboo”, both a reminder to the uninitiated of Asics’s Japanese founding and heritage.
While some brands are investing in technology that can make the most unusual knits or the most ornate technical jacquards, Asics have been giving some creative treatments to traditional twills. The floral denim is innovation habit that has also seen the introduction of dark denim with polka dots (on the Gel Lyte III). This should work in Asics’s favour considering how well liked Japanese denims are.
The Gel Lyte V was first released in 1993 and feature Asics’s gel cushioning and a fit that has been described as “sock-like”. The combined features have placed the Gel Lyte V as one of the best running shoes of all time, inducing sneaker giants such as Ronnie Fieg to produce their own interpretations. We’re not sure how prominent this shoe is on the running track, but with the floral denim, we’re sure they will be seen a lot on city pavements.
Asics Gel Lyte V “Floral Denim” for men and women, SGD189, is available at Onitsuka Tiger, Pedder on Scotts, Star 360 and select stockists. Photo: Jim Sim