Wearing Your Shows: Top Designs for the Otaku-Aligned Anime Lovers

Jordan 1 x Dragonball custom shoes, Spirited Away x custom Air Force Ones and Pokemon x custom Fila; these beautifully-painted custom sneakers from The Custom Movement give you the opportunity to show your inner otaku out in public.
Scott Hirabayashi · Nov 10

Anime. What was once a secret obsession of our childhoods has now blossomed into a global obsession. Adidas has had special collaborations with DBZ, Uniqlo has thrown together countless anime collabs with many great designs. But for those of you who really love your shows (and your shoes), The Custom Movement and its team of amazing designers give you even more options to represent Japan’s beautiful art. These are three amazing creations from some anime-loving custom sneaker artists:

Air Jordan 1 x Dragonball (Unknown Artist)

Dragonball’s cloud-riding Goku on the canvas of a classic sneaker? Transforming the grail status of the Shattered Backboard colorway, with it’s beautiful oranges on the Jordan 1, an unknown artist, gives Dragonball’s Goku one of the most attractive canvases to cloud-surf upon.

With the original Jordan 1 released in 1985, and the Dragonball manga being released in December of 1984, these were contemporaries. And honestly, what kid from the 90’s until today hasn’t had their lives impacted by Dragonball and Jordan Brand?

Air Force 1 x Spirited Away (Sold Out) by DP Customs

If there is any anime director who moved the needle from ‘weird fad’ to ‘global phenomenon’ for anime, it has to be Studio Ghibli’s Hayao Miyazaki. His movies are classic and timeless, and they transcend the medium. My Neighbor Totoro, Howl’s Moving Castle… these Miyazaki creations could turn even the most ardent defenders of “well, it’s just a cartoon” to crack a begrudging smile. The innocence of youth, exploration, and growing up are central themes in his work.

In this Air Force 1 take on Spirited Away, Mexico-based DP Customs does a wonderful job capturing these elements. She paints two stunning scenes on the midsole of the left and right sneaker; one as the melancholic meetings between Chihiro/Sen and No-Face, and another as the beautiful, blued-out scene with Chihiro/Sen and Haku.

If you like sneakers, anime, and art, this is truly a shoe for you. For things so beautiful, it’s worth the wait.

Pokemon Kicks (Fila x Pokemon) ($154) by Sneaker Bot

While in some ways, Pokemon was an anime-lite, it was also one of the gateways into the Anime medium for so many of us. If you can recite the names of more than 20 Pokemon, I can bet that you also once wanted to catch ‘em all.

For both the classic fans and the Pokemon lifers, India-based Sneakerbot beautifully captures the first three pokemon: Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and Charmander, as well as Ash and Pikachu. Sneakerbot’s work is hand-painted, and he says that it sometimes can take up to 20 hours for a pair (wow!). A true lover of the design and painting process, the fashion, and the individuality of the movement, he uses only high-quality paint. Additionally, he promises that you certainly won’t be disappointed with his works of art!

So, re-capture the joys of youth with this beautiful canvas of classic Pokemon on a clean white Fila.

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