The Fujiwara Treatment: Top FRAGMENT Collabs Every Sneakerhead Should Know
Contributed by Rebekah & Elly
Brands, Collabs, Fashion
November 9, 2022
Rebekah & Elly
Image courtesy of Foot District
From Starbucks coffee cups to designing special-edition Maseratis, Japanese creative powerhouse and ‘Godfather of Streetwear’ Hiroshi Fujiwara is no stranger to the art of collaboration. Under his label, Fragment Design, Fujiwara has lent his vision to a myriad of industries to overwhelming acclaim.
True to his streetwear roots, his sneaker collaborations– with the creme de la creme of streetwear, fashion, and design, of course— have been nothing less than exceptional. Here are some of our favourites.
FRAGMENT DESIGN X UNDERCOVER X VISVIM FBT
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Around the time Fujiwara’s friend Hiroki Nakamura founded his cult menswear label visvim, Fujiwara showed Nakamura a Fun Boy Three album cover, highlighting lead singer Terry Hall’s moccasins on the image. This was the catalyst behind the duo’s eventual collaboration in 2003 along with Jun Takahashi’s UNDERCOVER, dubbed the FBT after the band that inspired them. This fringed, black number was one of the first of many joint projects Fujiwara would work on with visvim. FRAGMENT DESIGN X NIKE AIR FOOTSCAPE WOVEN ‘POLKA’
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Throughout the early 2000’s, polka dots were a running theme throughout Fujiwara’s work under Fragment, appearing in a number of apparel and luggage collections as well as other collaborations with Nike, such as the Air Force 1 and Dunk models. However, this particular design stands out among his polka dotted catalogue with its experimental, seamless approach to print and texture. CONVERSE CHUCK TAYLOR ALL STAR (PRODUCT) RED
Image courtesy of Hypebeast
In 2008, Fujiwara simultaneously lent his talents to one of the era’s most iconic footwear brands and gave back to the community with his collaboration with Converse and (Product) Red— a social enterprise dedicated to helping those with HIV/AIDS in Africa. Fujiwara was one of the earliest of a series of collaborations the initiative conducted, which included major brands such as Apple and Nike. The simple, two-toned colour scheme modestly paired with the FRAGMENT logo allowed the classic All-Star silhouette to shine through. HIROSHI FUJIWARA X TAKASHI MURAKAMI X VISVIM KIEFER
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By the late 2000s, HF was one of the most well-known figures in Japanese culture. He worked with fellow Japanese artist Takashi Murakami in 2008 as a component of the “Hi & Lo” exhibition highlighting the fusion of street culture and pop art. Hiroshi asked his old friend at visvim to add Murakami’s characteristic flower and understated Fragment branding on the Kiefer high-top. Only 330 models of this rare sneaker find exist today! FRAGMENT DESIGN X NIKE AIR FOOTSCAPE TZ
Image courtesy of www.freshnessmag.com
One thing about Fujiwara is that he loves a side-lacing element, as seen in multiple collaborations via Fragment Design and of course, the Nike Air Footscape TZ collaboration in 2009. The simple, yet edgy two-toned colourway and #properfootscapes template. Additionally, and in step with Fragment’s reputation for exclusivity, it was a Nike Tier Zero release, which meant that only select knowledgeable collectors had access to the drop. FRAGMENT DESIGN X COLE HAAN LUNARGRAND WINGTIP (2012)
Image courtesy of Sneaker Freaker
In the 2010s, Fragment Design wasn’t only focused on sports and streetwear- a fact that’s exhibited by his 2012 collection with Cole Haan, a brand known for its upscale dress wear. The flagship Cole Haan LunarGrand model blended the traditional dress shoe silhouette with sportswear cushioning function courtesy of Nike, as Cole Haan was a part of the Nike family at the time. The classic styling of the shoe combined with the irreverent, lighthearted bubblegum-pink sole was a solid reminder to keep Fujiwara fans on their toes.