words // Nick Engvall
In the current state of the sneakers where everyone collaborates with everyone, there seems to be extra branding thrown onto everything from casual beaters, to high end partnerships we should never see coming together. It's becoming more apparent every month which companies are just out to make a quick buck off of the hype machine. Not that making a buck isn't the reason for being in business, but as cliché as it sounds, it has to make sense before it can make dollars.
Without calling out any specifics, it's safe to say that most of the collabs that have been hitting the market lately seem to lack what matters most when it comes to a small retailer who has the opportunity to design for a sneaker manufacturer. That is, they forget that as a small boutique, it's the local community first and foremost, that makes you successful.
One boutique that seems to nearly always get it right is Concepts in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Of course, teaming up with their local New England friends at New Balance means that both companies can focus on what they experience in the Boston area day in and day out. With both companies providing jobs in the area and supporting the local community as priority, the Concepts x New Balance 999 we first previewed back in December, embodies one of the most important pieces of the New England community, its rich sailing history. To further tie in the importance of the community to the nautical inspired colorway of the New Balance 999, Concepts has also prepared a small capsule collection which includes a premium sail polo, five panel duck brimmed cap, artisan sail-lace tee, semaphore tote bag, signature Rayban Wayfarers, bucket hat, monkey fist key chain and rope bracelet handmade just a short trip south in Nantucket.
Concepts will release the New Balance 999 and matching collection this Saturday, April 16, 2011. Phone orders will be taken on April 18, 2011 at 12pm EST.