We are well aware now, thanks in large part to The Fashion Law, of the sometimes egregious examples of designers ripping off other designers. Whether it is Chanel passing off designs from an emerging designer as their own, or Zara’s regular reinterpretation of runway pieces, it typically leaves a poor taste in the reader's mouth. It drives home the point that, except on rare occasion, procuring something truly original and worth having is not always available at your nearest H&M. Unless you don’t care about that sort of thing, or Bangladesh factory fires and sweatshop abuses, in which case, more power to you, savvy shopper. To combat this, as we continually try to do, we thought we would highlight one recent example of when one designer is inspired by another and, instead of giving in to utter laziness and copying the former, creates a legitimately unique creation of their own while honoring their inspiration.
The example I am referring to takes the form of some excellent men’s shoes with classic inspiration. Below is Yuketen’s Saylor Sole Sneaker Moc. With its white upper and various textures and subtle green detailing on the sole, it’s hard to be reminded of another shoe … The Adidas Rod Laver. Introduced in 1970 as the pro model for Tennis Great, you guessed it, Rod Laver, these have been a sleeper hit for Adidas for about as long. Sure, they have never as popular as the Stan Smith but they are still a definite classic for the tri-stripe brand.
Or, maybe this is stretching it and I just wanted to an excuse to talk about Yuketen, a brand that has been specializing in classic footwear and manufacturing in the U.S. since 1985. According to the brand, its founder and head designer, "Yuki Matsuda, has befriended artisans of leather, footwear, and luggage in regions throughout the world resulting in globally renowned rewarding collaborative teamwork unrestricted by political borders." And we think this is way cooler than shitty Steve Madden shoes that are copies and made in questionable conditions.