Sole Collector x NikeTown New York Event | Held November 16th, 2005
words & images_Nick DePaula
The "Cowboy" Dunk Low is certainly the most polarizing shoe Sole Collector has ever worked on. Every single panel is not only a different color, but also a different material. For some, it was a bit much. For others, an instant classic.
Retrokid reminisces a bit over how the "Cowboy" Dunk came about, and why he was so set on making it so loud.
Nick DePaula: New York. Event was wild. Place was packed and the Cowboy Dunk hits. What was that whole scene like?
Retrokid: New York was crazy. With the success of the 2K5s [in Boston], we wanted to do something a little more basic that we knew we could sell, but then also do two colors again and do one safe and then do something a little more crazy.
The first one we did was Yankees inspired, so it had navy with white patent and contrast stitching for the pinstripe look. For the second Cowboy shoe, we wanted to also do the same mismatch of colors. I also wanted to try something a little more different though, and I wanted to block the Dunk in a way that it has never been done before. I was looking at the panel on the side where the Swoosh intersects, and they actually told me that that was two separate panels.
Most Dunks are blocked the same color, but I wanted to try it split down the middle instead. For the Yankees, we did a navy upper with the white piece splitting it and going around the back. There's even more of it on the Cowboy, where one piece was a completely different colored material and then the heel was an entirely different material and color again.
The Cowboy version, basically I wanted to take every section of the Dunk and have it be a different color, as well as a different material. [laughs] We played with a bunch of different treatments, and the original concept for the outsole was to be clear, but we couldn't go with that. They offered us the speckled midsole, and that was cool how that came out, and the gum sole actually turned out real good because it didn't blend with anything else on the shoe -- which was the point. We had black snakeskin, we had reptile, we had suede, we had white ostrich [laughs], pretty much every material under the sun. They also lasered the number of the shoe on the side, for both the Yankees and the Cowboy, which was really cool.
NDP: What was the response like?
RK: When the Cowboy came out, I don't think kids really knew what to make of it. The Yankees sold out right away too, and just the energy around New York was great. There was a lineup for four or five days, around the block, and I remember it, because we flew in early to make sure everyone was ok out there. It was cold, it was rainy, and at one point, they moved the line into the atrium area of Niketown. That was real cool.
It was real good energy, and a lot of nice shoes on display, and I think that one was the real big one and a lot of the blogs covered it. It was really good, and the Cowboy Dunk is still one of my favorites. I'm surprised they let us do what we did with it. [laughs] It was a really fun thing to do, and playing with materials and colors is always fun, but mixing it up and doing the Dunk in a way that it's never been done before, was really a nice experience.
Images from the event: