A Tale of the Tiger: Onitsuka Tiger Reinvents Layering with Its New Collection

Roaring loud from the Land of the Rising Sun

The tiger rises once again with an 80s-inspired Japanese aesthetic

Imagine walking at the mall and spotting a cool kid wearing familiar white sneakers with red and blue stripes. Then, you see another, and then one more. You realize it’s also the same shoes you own—the classic Onitsuka Tiger Mexico 66, an auxillary to a jeans, joggers, and shorts fashion in this day and age. Even Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, has given this pair his royal seal of approval.

As new and as cool as this concept may seem, Onitsuka Tiger have told a long tale and have spoken of cultural prestige even before the sneakers became a popular, modern shoesthetic. This is a testament to the brand’s timelessness, transcending generations.

Details of CRESTY™ from the AW22 Collection up close

A concept beyond an arm’s length

Onitsuka Tiger has been known to create sports-inspired head-to-toe fashion in pursuit of ultimate comfort and innovative design, which lie where the eyes cannot see. Bet you didn’t know that the distinctive stripes serve a special function apart from being the sneakers’ iconic trademark. The shoelaces were integrated into the design, thereby improving the shoes’ overall stability and durability.

Talking about form, Onitsuka Tiger’s signature style depicts the brand’s respect to the Japanese heritage and their admiration for refined and contemporary creative designs. With a craftsmanship that heeds to quality and detail, the brand aims to satisfy the hunger of those looking for luxury and an entirely new value system in the new age. 

A trip down the memory lane

Models rocking Onitsuka Tiger’s genderless AW22 Collection

On February 25, 2022, Onitsuka Tiger turned up with its Autumn/Winter 2022 Collection at the Milan Fashion Week under the direction of Creative Director Andrea Pompilio. This was the brand’s first physical fashion appearance since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

While the Onitsuka Tiger AW21 Collection previously worked on neon colors, the AW22 Collection played on monochromes, silhouettes, and minute details. The collection is an ode to the Japanese eighties aesthetic of purity and austerity, which refers to the distinctive black clothes with unexpected volumes and layers portraying the underground culture of the time—think kimonos, ninjas, and black leather boots all in one fashion piece, but with a contemporary take. Typical of Japanese fashion style, AW22 expresses an original and genderless collection.

A vintage style on modern streets

The AW22 ensemble—the kicks: ACROMOUNT BOOT™ (left) and PETAL™ (right); the fit: WS TOP (right, on female model when layered with cotton shirts and jackets)

Onitsuka Tiger’s latest collection features ultra-oversized T-shirts made of heavy cotton and graphically embroidered overdresses that have a particular flame-and-flower print at the hem. Velour dresses with a Gothic and slightly modern rock star style, and mini dresses with a drawstring waist were also introduced during the show. The apparels were layered with nylon jackets, maxi Bermuda pants, midi-length pleated skirts, and multi-pocketed waistcoats. 

For footwear, AW22 presents the PETAL™ model which is a classic court style shoe with an ankle-height upper, and the ACROMOUNT KNIT™ model that hinted at the black and white design of the collection. The shoes worn in the show were a pair of punkish flat-soled leather shoes and of balky platform-soled sneakers in thin quilted nylon. 

The AW22 Collection will be available in September. Catch the full line of products from head-to-toe at Onitsuka Tiger’s website. For updates, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.