The Nike SB Dunk Low “Street Hawker” expresses the “bonding effect” between disparate regions in China through the contrasting panels that make up the upper. Utilizing an array of materials and patterns, the shoe serves as a testament to the vast culinary landscape throughout the nation that has yet to be meaningfully revealed to the world. Six regional dishes signature to Chinese cities are specifically illustrated by Deng in watercolor paintings with image references applied to the accompanying special shoebox. Catch Nike SB’s in-depth break down of all the gastronomic inspirations that went into the “Street Hawker” release below.
1. The left shoe uses a lighter beige for three flour-based dishes.
2. The suede toebox mimics the color and texture of green bean soup (Douzhi) from Beijing.
3. Donut (Jiaoquan) patterns on the forefoot pair with the green bean soup.
4. Embossed suede on the lateral side shows shredded pita bread pieces for a traditional Xi’an dish: pita bread soaked in mutton soup.
5. That mutton soup is represented in water-color patterns across the lateral side.
6. The Swoosh is depicted in a wood-grain texture to represent chopsticks.
7. On the lateral heel, water-color fading looks like Shanghai plain noodles, also called Yangchun noodles.
8. An embroidered 10-cent copper coin appears on the lateral heel, hinting at Yangchun noodles.
9. The left insole resembles a blue sky, inspired by traditional Chinese slang implying that people treat food as their heaven.
10. The blue lining of the left midsole mimics the blue-and-white of fine porcelain bowls.
11. The right shoe features hotter colors to represent different heats, from spicy to sweet.
12. The metallic color on the right toebox is pulled from Chengdu hotpots in which dishes are cooked.
13. Boiling chili-oil treatments bubble around the toebox.
14. Ostrich leather on the lateral side is inspired by the crispy roasted goose skin that’s famous in Guangzhou.
15. The silver Swoosh resembles the metal hook used to hang the roast goose.
16. The flame and Lychee wood used to roast the goose appears in a watercolor pattern around the eyelits.
17. Shaved ice and taro balls — a common Taipei dessert — can be found on the heel counter.
18. The insole paints the scene of a bench terrace, a landscaping method used to grow rice paddies.
19. The collar lining reflects the color of meat dishes.
20. The yellow outsole represents cooking oils.
21. Heel tabs feature Chinese calligraphy for “food” in black and white thread.
22. Four colors of laces are inspired by four essential seasonings in Chinese cuisine: green (shallots), yellow (ginger), white (garlic) and black (black pepper).