mastermind JAPAN x adidas Pro Model CMF

  • DESIGNED BY: mastermind JAPAN
  • MADE ON: 05/13
  • ART.NO: G95179
  • FACTORY: APE 779001

Out of all the shoes in their latest (and last) collaboration with adidas, it’s probably safe to say that the Pro Model is by far the weakest and weirdest of the mastermind JAPAN releases.

Why they decided to add Velcro straps I have no idea but honestly on first look they’re hideous. The true beauty of the Pro Model is its classic nature, though if we’re actually honest it’s easy to admit the shoe is quite ugly to begin with. For those that grew up with or just blindly love shell-toes this might be a hard point to argue, but the rubber, textured cap isn’t the most appealing design feature, nor does it inspire comfort. Then add the simplistic and certainly majestic, yet still bulky body to the mix and you’ve got one fucking ugly duckling of a hoop shoe.

But it’s their legacy and their meaning and their character that win the masses over. So why go and destroy that with some nasty Velcro straps? I’m truly puzzled by the decision behind mastermind JAPAN’s move on these.

Moving past the pressure point of Velcro, the ’80s shell and outsole are both wonderful in their own right – and of course expected details of the design – the stitching is superb, and they feature the yummiest sockliner that almost seems to be leather (but mostly likely isn’t) glued in place and embossed and printed with the joint collaborative partners’ logos.

As with the ZX 500, the upper is patterned with miniature X’s, an intersting touch, but not necessarily adding to their luxury. It feels like mastermind honestly didn’t know what to do with the Pro Model actually. However, again, the quality is on point; supple leather and the suede tongue is a fantastic touch, though it leaves one wanting… if only the whole shoe were suede, now that would’ve been a collab to remember!

Finished off by a silver ‘endorsed by’ tongue tag that’s unfortunately covered by these hideous Velcro tentacles, but luckily the shoes can be comfortably worn with the top strap undone, exposing the rich branding design. And actually they aren’t as bad on foot as off.

The production and release dates are close as hell which only makes me think they were rushed and even further the slim cardboard curve inserted in the shoes to pack the tongue in place as well as the packaging tissue (which is more like recycled paper, stiff and as unsexy as possible) both lead me to feel the pair is cheaper than it should be. However it could be just that they sank the money in materials, and not design or packaging, so that’s always a trade off to think hard over. As well, who out there isn’t absolutely loving these completely righteous Consortium x mastermind JAPAN shoe boxes?

written by Dylan Cromwell

photography by errol

shoes contributed by Ross MacWaters

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