Namacheko Quietly Steps Into the Sneaker Game


Belgian fashion label Namacheko is more than content to blaze its own trail and it has the ardent base of supporters necessary to do just that. Seriously: its fans sold out Namacheko’s debut sneaker almost as quickly as it released.

But don’t worry. The shoes are coming back. In fact, they’re already here.

First, though, debut sneaker? Yep, Namacheko is finally getting into footwear nearly five years after it was founded.

This isn’t Namacheko’s only stab at shoes, of course, as it’s created a variety of footwear with venerable Italian shoemaker Enzo Bonafe over the years, from fur-lined loafers to brogued leather derbies.

However, the Murabi sneaker is Namacheko’s first in-house design. The result is a blend of Namacheko house codes, filtering a familiar silhouette through the label’s skewed take on clasic menswear.

If that sounds like a load of jargon, relive its Fall/Winter 2022 collection, where the Murabi shoe was first spotted on-feet.

Look at how knits, styled over tunics, bleed into bristling fur gloves, coat lapels are extended and embellished, shirts are wrapped in layered textiles that drape atop the torso.

The actual silhouettes are relatively conventional but Namacheko’s garments are totally advanced stuff, not for the faint of heart or wardrobe. If you can’t wear these clothes, they’ll wear you.

Namacheko’s Murabi sneaker is a lot less directional.

Inspired by the classic German Army Trainer — you can see remnants of similar influence in kicks as disparate as Maison Margiela’s signature Replica sneakers, the adidas Samba, and, say, Cav Empt’s original shoe — Namacheko’s Murabi shoe is handmade in Italy of upcycled deadstock leather riddled by a series of intentional aberrations.

According to the brand, this textile tells a story “of the fragility of cultural identities through its carefully cut upper layer, unveiling patterns of geographical borders as they become an expression of them.”

The anomalous leather also ensures that each shoe will be entirely unique.

Namacheko’s Murabi shoe will be available at tastemaking boutiques like BEAMS, Anchoret, 8DIVISION, Meclads, Machine-A, Roden Gray, and SSENSE from October 6 in silver and blue-tinged colorways for €200 (about $195) apiece.

These sneakers a little more showy than the muted grey pair that released through Namacheko’s web store
on October 2 and immediately sold out, but not nearly as wild as the kicks Namacheko has in the works for Spring/Summer 2023.

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