New Balance's storied relationship with Japan is a tale often told in sneaker lore. With a legacy spanning over half a century, Japan's love affair with New Balance has resulted in remarkable country-exclusive designs and collaborations that sneaker enthusiasts covet. Among the Japanese labels championing this enduring bond is WTAPS, seamlessly blending Tetsu Nishiyama's visionary aesthetic with New Balance's heritage.
From the lauded NB 992 to the 990v2, WTAPS and New Balance have previously combined forces to create limited-edition silhouettes that have become instant classics. Their partnership is now setting its sights on a fresh canvas: the New Balance 990v6.
Recently unveiled through images leaked from Asia, the WTAPS x NB 990v6 proudly sports its “Made in USA” badge, further strengthening the cultural bridge between Japan and the US. The sneaker channels its predecessor's grayscale palette, utilizing a fusion of breathable mesh and luxe suede to craft an upper that whispers elegance while speaking volumes of its craftsmanship.
Branding is tastefully handled, with WTAPS making its presence known through discreet logos on the sockliner and spine, allowing the shoe's design to remain undisturbed. One cannot miss the enlarged heel panel showcasing bold "USA" text, further emphasizing the silhouette's origins.
Yet, the collaboration is not merely about looks. Including FuelCell technology ensures wearers experience the utmost comfort with every step, rounded off with a grayscale sole that embodies the refined nature of this collaboration.