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Iconic Converse Weapon Returns With Fragment Collaboration 

Last Updated: July 1, 2023
The 1986 staple featuring the Star Chevron is back in the familiar and beloved white, black, and blue colorway. 

With the return of one of its most famous designs on the horizon, Converse has tapped legendary Japanese fashion pioneer and designer Hiroshi Fujiwara for a collaboration. The project will combine the designer’s longtime understated style with one of the Nike Inc. umbrella’s most celebrated mid-80s models. 

Launched just a year after the Air Jordan 1 in 1986, the likes of Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Isiah Thomas originally wore the Converse Weapon for the prime of their Association dominance. Though initially available for just two seasons, the Weapon has remained as one of the enduring icons of the era.

via Converse

It wasn’t until 2003 that Nike acquired Converse, fittingly the same year that Fujiwara launched his Fragment Design studio imprint. In the two decades since, Fujiwara has become a foundational figure in cementing Harajuku as a fashion capital of the world, while also earning his “Godfather of Streetwear” nickname through a continuous cycle of collaborations with the likes of Nike, Louis Vuitton, Maserati, Medicom, Rolex, and others.

Converse and Fragment have come together in the past — primarily remixing the Chuck Taylor — but this collaboration marks the first time that the pair has worked on the Weapon. 

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“As I was looking for a shoe to work on with Converse, I immediately thought the Weapon would be good for me,” Fujiwara said. ”It’s a classic shoe I used to wear in my childhood.”

While the black and blue hues sound simple, the brand calls it “a palette reserved for only the most sought-after silhouettes.” A similar colorblocking had been seen on the Fragment x Air Jordan 1 High in 2014, and purposely resembles the wildly popular Travis Scott and Fragment edition of the Air Jordan 1 Low from 2021. 

Now fetching north of four figures, the Fragment framed colorway returns once again on the Weapon, with an embossed execution of the company’s lightning bolt logo along the heel, and color accents highlighting both the Star Chevron logo and the model’s unmistakable “Y-Bar” leather overlay along the collar. 

“I thought about trying different colorblocks,” Fujiwara added. “But I ended up going with the current design to pay homage to the iconic shoe.”

In the nearly 40 years since it launched, the Weapon has seen its share of true-to-form bring-backs and modernized makeups. 

via Converse

There’ve been plenty of re-releases of the Lakers colorway worn by Magic Johnson and the more simple black-and-white edition donned by Bird, harkening back to one of the company’s greatest campaigns: “Choose Your Weapon.” (There was also a short-lived and admittedly ambitious attempt at attaching a new cushioning system to the design, dubbed “Balls Technology.”)

This time, the brand hopes to more honestly honor the tradition of the silhouette, with simple and classic colorways coming. 

“From our All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, to our OG Kelly Oubre Jr., our reigning champion Draymond Green and our WNBA star Natasha Cloud … all of our roster has been feeling it,” said Georges Labossiere, Senior Director of Converse Energy Footwear. 

First teased by SGA during his ASW arrival in all white with neutral grey accents, the Weapon will serve as the brand’s flagship retro model off the court for its athletes and brand partners in the next year.

“You saw Shai during his down time and even in warm-ups [at All-Star Weekend] rocking different variations of the Weapon,” Labossiere said. “All of our athletes have been into them, and we have the benefit of working with some of the League Fits-certified, most stylish guys in the league.”

Grounded in a simple and familiar look to start, the Converse x Fragment Weapon by Hiroshi Fujiwara will launch on May 11. It will also include an apparel capsule of elevated pieces including a wool varsity jacket, French terry hoody, and jersey tees in a similar royal blue and black look. 

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About The Author
Nick DePaula
Nick DePaula
Nick DePaula covers the footwear industry and endorsement deals surrounding the sporting landscape, with an emphasis on athlete and executive interviews. The Sacramento, California, native has been based in Portland, Oregon, for the last decade, a main hub of sneaker company headquarters. He’ll often argue that How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days is actually an underrated movie, largely because it’s the only time his Sacramento Kings have made the NBA Finals.