On Tuesday, September 13th, Cole Haan and New York-based MC Theophilus London will release the limited edition Cole Haan Theophilus Blue Suede Buck exclusively at the Cole Haan store in SoHo.
Combining Cole Haan’s tradition of craftsmanship and innovation with Theophilus’ personal inspirations and unique style, the highly anticipated collaboration will be accompanied by a 10″ vinyl cover version of Nat King Cole’s classic “Calypso Blues”, performed by the artist.
“Calypso Blues” Soundcloud Stream:
“Theophilus embodies individual American style. He’s part of a new generation that understands iconic classics from a modern perspective,” said Cole Haan VP of Design, Phil Russo. “For over a century we’ve challenged ourselves to disrupt, evolve and re-define tradition. Partnerships with creatives, like Theophilus, further inspire us.”
The collaboration began as a conversation between Theophilus and Phil Russo while shooting the brand’s Spring 2011 campaign, in which he was featured. Theophilus recalls, “We were talking about Cole Haan’s history and tradition, then came the idea to create a special version of a Cole Haan classic. On my second tour for “A Mixtape”, I fell in love with the buck, so I suggested we work on one together. This was my first time working on a product collaboration and it was very exciting.”
Theophilus’ on-stage performances and demanding international travel required the shoes to both perform and look good from morning to night, New York to Paris to Los Angeles, and back. “I wanted to create a shoe that I could always wear – a shoe that was an all-rounder.” Often contrasting qualities of style and performance became a focus of the creative process. “These are the challenges that drive our brand,” said Russo. “Style and performance brought together through craftsmanship and innovation.”
The result is a shoe that embraces tradition in the spirit of tomorrow. Rich navy uppers are crafted of the finest nubuck suede from American cowhides, allowing for high color saturation, and offset against a bright blue outsole which draws immediate attention, transforming traditional style with a modern twist. A natural cow leather skeleton lining offers structure with much-reduced bulk and weight while retaining form and structure, and a cow leather sock-lining with perforated details offers enhanced breathability. Together with a full-length flexible foam latex foot bed, the Cole Haan Theophilus Blue Suede Buck can be comfortably worn sockless from day to night.
The detailing mixes form and function, as sole and heel incorporate traditional cobblers techniques, but are paired with innovation and modern craft. The sole? It consists of lightweight EVA with laser-engraved siping, and employed to provide enhanced traction. The heel? Inside, there is Nike Air Technology for enhanced comfort and on the outside, a “Gentleman’s Corner” – a traditional cobbling technique where the corner of the inner heel-edge is shaved to prevent pant cuffs from catching on the heel.
Like the man himself, this Cole Haan & Theophilus London Blue Suede Buck doesn’t overlook subtle personal details. Refined signature gold embellishments include lace tips, eyelets and cobble nails, as well as an embossed gold Theophilus London signature in each heel bed. The finishing touch is three lace color options (navy, bright blue and natural), which keep with Theophilus’ belief that shoes tell stories: allowing different stories to be told from day to night, outfit to outfit.
The Cole Haan Theophilus Blue Suede Buck will be available exclusively at Cole Haan SoHo, 128 Prince St., New York on Tuesday, September 13th, 2011 at 7pm, with an exclusive DJ performance by Theophilus London in-store at 8pm.
Complex Blue Suede Buck Preview:
Theophilus’ Hypebeast Blue Suede Buck Post: