MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 02: Naomi Osaka of Japan looks on during her Women's Singles match, second round, against Karolina Muchova of Czech Republic on the WTA 1000 - Mutua Madrid Open 2021 at La Caja Magica on May 2, 2021 in Madrid, Spain (Photo by Oscar J. Barroso / Europa Press Sports via Getty Images)
Europa Press Sports/Europa Press/Getty Images

Fashion

How Naomi Osaka’s Nike Partnership Has Evolved Over The Years

The tennis star is back with Nike for another apparel collection (and sneaker release).

Following a number of recent fashion collaborations, from swimwear to denim, Naomi Osaka is back with Nike for another apparel collection (and sneaker release) ahead of her next tournament, the 2021 French Open.

Following her debut capsule in November 2020, Nike revealed Osaka’s latest collection on Monday, featuring an assortment of tops, hoodies, shorts, and cropped leggings that combine sport with fashion-forward details, like camo print and mixed fabrics. Plus, for the first time ever, Osaka’s own French Open tennis dress and sneakers — a tie-dyed pair of Air Zoom GP Turbo sneakers with a Swarovski-crystal swoosh — will be available for purchase.

Osaka has been working with Nike since 2019, and her partnership has evolved both on a design and performance level over the past two years. “From the start I observed that Naomi’s style is a spectrum — wearing a floral ruffled maxi dress one day, and a hardcore street-inspired look the next. With Naomi, the only constant is change,” Carly Ellis, Senior Apparel Designer for NikeCourt, tells NYLON. “This fluidity and experimentation still exists today, and her apparel continues to evolve. We’ll continue to follow her lead as she explores and grows.”

Renderings of Naomi Osaka’s NikeCourt collection.Courtesy of Nike

“Nike is a place where I can just go and explore,” says Osaka in an official statement. “Sometimes I feel like it’s like a playground for designers. What’s fun is our conversations start with just an idea, and lead to really fun, creative designs that reflect who I am as an athlete and woman.”

Ellis has been working closely with Osaka since she signed with the global sports brand, and she says that the tennis champ has become more vocal with her hands-on design process. For this particular collection, every piece has something that Osaka has always incorporated into her own style: For example, the crop top uses rib material that she likes and incorporates Dri-FIT performance technology, while the utility short features her favorite Nike waistband style. Ellis also notes that Osaka loves a halter neckline, so it was built into the bodysuit.

“Getting to know Naomi on a deeper level has given us the ability to serve her with product that is uniquely hers,” adds Ellis. “She’s incredibly dynamic and her collection reflects this with just six pieces that can be layered and styled into over 30 looks. It’s as multifaceted as she is.”

Nike’s Naomi Osaka NikeCourt Dress and Air Zoom GP Turbo Naomi Osaka sneakers are available now for Nike Members. They’ll be available for purchase globally on May 31, followed by NikeCourt’s Naomi Osaka Collection drop on June 17. Until then, see more of the pieces in detail, below.

Naomi Osaka’s NikeCourt Dress for the 2021 French Open.Courtesy of Nike
Nike’s Air Zoom GP Turbo Naomi Osaka sneakers.Courtesy of Nike
A look from NikeCourt’s Naomi Osaka Collection.Courtesy of Nike
A look from NikeCourt’s Naomi Osaka Collection.Courtesy of Nike
A look from NikeCourt’s Naomi Osaka Collection.Courtesy of Nike