wataru sato shoes in yellow robot Gundam

 

近年のスニーカーブームの盛り上がりはすごい。Twitterのタイムラインは”◯◯の復刻版登場!”とか、”〇〇と〇〇がコラボスニーカー!”なんていうニュースでいっぱいだ。さらに、夏が近づきtavaをはじめとしたアウトドアサンダルもかなり人気が高まっている。どれも、それなりに可愛いけれど無難すぎてすぐ忘れてしまいそうな…そんな足元ファッション。

地球のこの東京という都市は足元おしゃれが得意なはず!おしゃれ上級者にはぜひ、個性的な靴にまた目を向けて欲しい。背景のストーリー設定とコンセプトの徹底がお得意な、マルタンマルジェラのような雰囲気でもあるような新人デザイナーwataru SATO!

Sneakers have stolen the hearts of humans who wear clothing the world over. Who could blame them, really? Once you get a taste of the stylish and orthopedic good stuff your soul ain’t coming back from the dark side.

Of course, perhaps it’s also because unique shoes are harder to find these days. In Tokyo, avantgarde fashion desginers are a dime a dozen but few dabble in the art of the shoe. So here’s Wataru Sato, an up-coming and award-winning shoe designer who takes inspiration from Gundam, Hobbit huts and pillows (comfy!). He’s got a lot going for him in story and it works in his favor that there’s a whiff of Martin Margiela-level conceptual-ism in the work. Walk on!…

wataru sato shoes in wood and pegs

wataru SATOは見るだけでわくわくするような靴を作っている。ミーシャ自身もそのシューズに魅せられて、ファッションウィークやスタイルブックの撮影で何度か履かせていただいた!

おもしろいのは見た目のインパクトだけではなく、クリエーションに込められたテーマやストーリー。例えば皮革や木をつかったコレクションでは”エスニック”から派生して自然を感じられる靴をつくり、ロボットコレクションでは巨大な身体を安定させるための下に向けて広がるソールに、”敵と戦うときのように自信をもった強さと美しさを”という女性に向けてのメッセージが込められている。

実は彼の卒業コンペティションのときに、ミーシャは審査員を務めていて、”これはあの彼の作品だ!”と、彼のつくる靴を見てすぐ気がついた。それくらいインパクトのあるものづくりだったから。今こんな風にどんどんクオリティの高い作品を世に出しているのを見ると、やっぱり学生の頃から光る物をもっていたんだなと。我ながら見る目あるなと思ったり。笑

日本からはKEI KAGAMI、ノリタカタテハナ、Masaya Kushinoなどという世界的な素晴らしいシューズデザイナーがいるけれど、彼にもぜひ世界へどんどん羽ばたいてほしいし、さらにパワフルなクリエーションを期待したいなと思う。

wataru sato HP

Wataru Sato makes shoes that offer impact upon sight. I was also so drawn to them I`ve mustered up some calf power to wear them during fashion week and for some photoshoots. Make no mistake, they aren’t meant to be worn for marathons, but the pyramids weren’t built to be casinos either, so apples and oranges.

As mentioned, the story behind his shoes are what propel the work into wearable art. His robot series is meant to make the wearer feel more powerful with armor and beauty when facing (intergalactic?) troubles.

I was looking through his archive and realized that a number of years ago I was on the panel of judges that crowned him the winner of his fashion school graduation competition. Well, I am pleased to give him and myself a pat on the back because there’s a lot of room for a forward-thinking show designer in this part of the world! Take a look at three of Wataru Sato’s latest experimental collections below (collection descriptions come form the designer, cleaned up arbitrarily a bit).

cushions(クッション)

”靴は足を守るためにある。クッションがあればもっと足に優しい靴ができる。そんな想いからクッションで足を包む、足のための靴コレクションを制作。”

“The shoes are for protecting feet. What can I do for the feet? The cushion absorbs shocks. Covering the feet with cushions protects the feet gently.This collection was made based on the consideration for feet.“(Considerate!-ed)

wataru sato shoes from the cushion collection

wataru sato shoes from the cushion collection

wataru sato shoes from the cushion collection

wataru sato bags from the cushion collection

wataru sato boots from the cushion collection

wataru sato shoes from the cushion collection

wataru sato shoes from the cushion collection
Ethnic × Ki (wood)  (エスニック×木)
“民族的な靴は彼らの文化に馴染んだものであり、木や金属など生活や環境に応じた素材が使われている。今回のコレクションでは自然を感じられる木を使用した。木は堅く形を形成しやすいのでよく使う。ということで、このシリーズは名前通り”エスニックと木”をテーマにした。”

“Ethnic shoes are made from culture, and by materials found around [the people], like fabric, leather or metal. There are some thnic shoes made by wood. The wood is hard material but easy to form, and it also represents nature.
This is the reason we often use wood for building. So I built up this collection from a love of Ethnic cultures and wooden structures.”

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection

 

wooden wataru sato shoes from the ethnic collection
We are Japanese Robots.

“日本で人気のアニメ、その中でもファンの多い”ロボット”に着目したコレクション。巨大なボディを支えるためのロボットの大きな足をイメージした。これを履いて、敵と戦う戦士の様に自信を持ってほしい。強く美しくあれ。”

“There’s one anime in Japan that’s particularly popular. I designed these shoes for this collection inspired bu this “robot” anime. When I was thinking about the design of a robot’s legs, [I noticed] their bottoms are wider than a usual leg’s form. Because they are huge, they need stability. I want you to wear these shoe and be confident, as if you’re a fighting robot up against an evil enemy. Be strong and beautiful.”

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

colorful wataru sato shoes from the robot gundam collection

Thanks for reading about Wataru Sato- for more information on the shoe designer, visit his website here

 

Misha Janette
Natsumi Yasuoka