“Haters Getting Mad Cuz I Got Me Some (New Balance) Bathing Apes!”

Polite WW

Brand: BAPE x New Balance

Model: 57/40

Release Date: July 30

Price: $160

Buy: Online at BAPE

Editor’s Notes: BAPE Balance? New BAPE? Whichever one takes your fancy, it’s about time we slapped a label on all team-ups between BAPE and New Balance going forward. There have been plenty over the last few years, each just as daring as the last.

If the design sensibilities of Teddy Santis (and by default, Aime Leon Dore) aren’t exactly your cup of tea when dipping into a fresh set of New Balance – as in, they’re a bit too clean and minimalist – BAPE is precisely what you need.

Just like the brand’s iconic apparel lines like Shark Hoodies or camo pieces, its footwear collaborations are unapologetically loud – a stark contrast to the norm of NB. Perhaps best of all, should you find yourself with 99x series fatigue, A Bathing Ape likes to cherry-pick silhouettes that aren’t as enshrined in the mainstream.

Case in point, the duo’s latest production sets eyes on the 57/40. Inspired by the 80s and 90s, the silhouette is best described as the crossroads of simplistic and extravagant design. Set atop a wavy midsole is a layered upper of mesh and suede that displays oversized branding elements. Mostly delivered in muted colorways, it feels like a natural evolution of the more dialed-back styles for which New Balance is known.

With BAPE’s hand, these contrasting design languages are exaggerated further, as midfoot branding elements are rendered in Ape Head Camo and encased in uppers rendered in the same colors. Three versions are on offer – a classic green, multicolored, and black on white. There’s also a sweet selection of graphic apparel too, but those are region exclusives to Japan and China.

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