the United Arab Emirates have a shoe that they can claim. The Frame x Nike SB Dunk Low “Habibi,” dressed in the UAE’s national colors and crammed with details connecting it to the country, is the Arabian Peninsula’s first major export in hype footwear. Like so many products and people of Dubai, it comes with a complicated story of origin and identity.
Where is it from? The shoe is a collaboration between Nike SB (Nike’s skateboarding division) and Frame, a trio of businesses in the Dubai Design District that consists of a boutique, a ramen shop, and a cafe.
Frame was founded as a “Japanese lifestyle culture shop” in 2017 by Peter Ahn, an expat from South Korea. He designed the “Habibi” Dunk as an homage to his adopted home. Fittingly, the sneakers released first at Frame on Dec. 2, coinciding with UAE National Day.
While bakeries punctured croissants with miniature flags and beaches were dotted with bigger ones, Frame’s Dunk arrived as another red, white, black, and green symbol of the holiday.