Stüssy let me write some things for Stüssy Biannual Volume 2 on the subject of an unused London photoshoot, theTribe’s meeting in Tokyo and Slam City Skates. i don’t know who’ll be holding it in the UK, but it looks pretty good. The impact of the brand on me back in the 1988-1992 era was vast, so it was fun to get involved and ask Michael Kopelman and Gareth Skewis — two people I look up to — some questions.
The sheer volume of collaborations out there on the sports footwear front will lead to an implosion that sends everyone scattering for their Aldens and moc-toed Red Wings. I’m giving it 15 months. Trainers haven’t been the domain of the cool kid for a while — it’s all shoe fetes and video recaps at the moment, but there’s always exceptions to the rule. I like the Reebok GL 6000 a lot, because it was one of the top-tier real runners back in 1986 alongside the LX 8500 and DL 5600 (I never understood why there was a 5600 in the range for basketball and running). The key to its appeal was the amount of technology in the shoe (extra densities, the forefoot fastenings, a Goodyear Indy 500 outole), but the lack of silly stuff that dates it made it pleasantly restrained too. After a crap early 2000s reissue, the 2009 retro and recent big letter reissue have done it justice, but nobody seems to be paying it any mind — it deserves better. Oshman’s in Tokyo — that curious export of a defunct American sports shop — is a place I’d like to be my final resting place. In fact, if they threw their Champion inventory into the vault or coffin, I’d happily be buried alive there. Because the Harajuku store opened in 1985, they’ve created a super-subtle Reebok collaboration that adds some green to a grey upper, with gold stitching at the heel for a harmonious look that avoids the silly stuff. Less can be more if the partner has a history or deeper appreciation of the subject matter.
I’ve never wanted any Marc Eckō apparel in my lifetime, but I wanted the tapes and the MC Serch clock. However, for creating Complex he gets my highest respect — the scale of the Eckō empire is ambitious and his book Unlabel: Selling You Without Selling Out is an interesting read in its breakdown of his life story, some lessons from the rag trade and an explanation from that period where he made some particularly douchey-looking public appearances (a mixture of marketing savvy and rich guy existential crisis). The best piece of wisdom is this one (worth throwing out there when someone says your product is shit):
On that subject, my friends at the Reference Council interviewed me and let me break down the criminal-concept behind my own Reebok shoe.