Celebrity Style

Naomi Osaka Designed Her Own Mismatched Shoes With A Special Meaning

They’re different colors for a reason.

Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka attends the Victoria's Secret New York Fashion Week kickoff event...
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Mismatched shoes might be becoming a trend. Tennis star Naomi Osaka is the latest celebrity to embrace the whimsical aesthetic, and she did so on one of the biggest stages in her sport. During her first round match at the 2024 French Open (aka Roland-Garros), she played in shoes with completely distinct designs.

Naomi’s Mismatched Kicks

After Osaka won the May 26 match, her on-court interviewer asked her about her GP Challenge 1 shoes, which are part of her latest Nike collection. Osaka called her footwear “the most beautiful tennis shoes ever” and gave a brief description of them.

“They have dragons and flowers on them, and they’re two different colors,” she said, “and I feel like it gives me a lot of strength … which is a really good thing.”

Nike’s website more fully explains what she hinted at: The shoes tap into symbols that both ground and fuel her. They’re mostly black with gold flower details, but one is part-red with dragons and the other is part-blue with additional flowers.

“This unique asymmetrical design is quintessential Naomi Osaka,” reads the product description. “It blends the great strength, power and good luck of a mythical dragon on the right shoe with the calming aura of some of Naomi’s favorite flowers on the left.”

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Nike didn’t just make them for Osaka. The brand is selling a hard-court version of the tennis shoes on its website for $170. You can buy them if you’re a hardcore tennis player or more of a tenniscore devotee.

Pulling A Taylor Swift

Osaka debuted her shoes in an apt place: Paris. Not only is it a fashion capital, it’s where Taylor Swift introduced her updated looks for the European leg of her Eras tour on May 9. Her new 1989 outfit that night was a pink crop top and blue skater skirt, paired with one Christian Louboutin ankle boot in each color. She’s been switching up the colors ever since, and the mismatching has continued.

Taylor Swift in Paris on May 9Kevin Mazur/TAS24/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Lucky Shoes?

Osaka will likely play in the same kit for the duration of her French Open run, however long that may be, and the strength and calmness her shoes offer will be useful. Her next match may be against current world No. 1, Iga Swiatek, when she plays in the second round on May 29.