Music and fashion creative Pharrell Williams closed out season 13 of Joe La Puma‘s Complex’s “Sneaker Shopping” series, an event staged in Miami’s Webster boutique. When asked about his high school sneaker choices, Williams said while he wanted Jordan sneakers, he primarily wore Vans because that was all his family could afford. Here and there he also mixed in some Vision Streetwear and Airwalk sneakers.
Wearing a Humanrace hoodie and Cactus Plant Flea Market socks, Pharrell discussed at length his first visit to Nigo’s A Bathing Ape showroom circa 2000-2001 in Tokyo, an experience he said changed his approach to fashion. “I’m looking at this guy thinking, you absolutely lived out all your dreams and turned them into businesses,” he explained. The meeting would lead Williams shortly thereafter to launch Billionaire Boys Club, whose logo Nigo designed.
Addressing Snoop Dogg‘s “Drop It Like Its Hot” visual in which Williams’ Reebok Ice Cream shoes were blurred out, he explained the Viacom-owned BET obscured the shoe because of a policy covering all prominently branded products in visuals. Pharrell said the move by Viacom worked in his favor because it spurred people to seek out the shoe.
The 48-year-old entrepreneur went on to discuss sneaker collab highlights, including his Nike Dunk released in 2004, a BAPE Roadsta in 2006, and an Adidas NMD sneaker with Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld. Limited to just 500 pairs, the shoe was released exclusively at the now shuttered Colette in Paris. Prominently embroidered with Pharrell and Channel on the top of each sneaker, Williams explained it was the first time his name appeared on a shoe, an idea Lagerfeld suggested.
He finished out by chatting about the upcoming launch of the Adidas Humanrace Sichona, which he wore a green (friends and family) pair of during the interview. Pharrell also revealed he worked with Adidas on its updated NMD S1, launching in 2022.
Check out the exchange below.