Reebok Fall/Winter 2008 – A Modern Nostalgia

There is a charm in Reebok’s footwear heritage, a mystique that can be attributed to their re-releases of classic models. This FW08 collection exemplifies Reebok’s insight into consumer demand and has released conceptualized versions of classic models, adding a modern twist to the nostalgia that has sustained them over the years.

“I’m seeing a lot of brands that are taking the boys shoes and doing them in womens colors, or in fun prints, we’re trying to amp up [our female models] and give them a fun and interesting personality.”

Ben Kuchler is Reebok’s Lifestyle Design Director and has been for the past nine years. Kuchler is responsible for the large majority of Reebok’s limited-edition projects (including ALIFE), collaborations (with Married to the Mob), and special projects (such as the ‘Freestyle’ relaunch package).

In a recent webcast, Kuchler introduced the brand’s FW08 line, and addressed various questions that us sneakerheads have been dying to inquire. He described the evolution of classic as “taking what we love as original models and breathing new life into them,” a non-complex answer that is indicative of where Reebok has headed — modernized nostalgia. “I think overall, typically what we do is try to have products that are a little bit more commercial and mainstream to give retailers something core and basic. We need those [commercial models] as well as the other models that you’d be more inclined to editorialize.”

On the women’s side, Kuchler unveiled a new, metallic look for the Vollee and Courtee models — the Vollee bearing striking similarities to the Freestyle model, and the Courtee being more basketball influenced, but with a fashionable twist. “I’m seeing a lot of brands that are taking the boys shoes and doing them in women’s colors, or in fun prints, we’re trying to amp up [our female models] and give them a fun and interesting personality.”

For men, Reebok has taken the success of the Reverse Jam and will segue its cousin, the Sir Jam Mid (probably the most ‘90s model on their roster); the iconic splatter paint is true to its original archived colorway. Their marquee model, Pump Omni Lite, makes an interesting return this season with a concept pack, titled ‘Elements’. With four styles, the collection is named after the four essential elements to survival: water, fire, earth, and wind. ‘Fire’ will be introduced in Q3, and ‘Water’ in Q4/holiday. Each color and texture is inspired by an element. According to Mr. Kuchler, these are all part of the Pump’s ‘Bring Back’ series and will be available to women in 2009.
With these conceptualized remakes of classics, it’s safe to say that Reebok is closing out 2008 with strides of cool.

Richard Cruz

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3 comments

  1. I love retro. I love the fire kick and the retro pump is right up my alley.

    Just to let everyone know we’ve a competition over at our site where you can win a pair of Adidas Original Hi-top ‘Forums’ from the Craftsmanship pack or $150 cash…just click on my sig n win.

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