Allen Edmonds and Parsons The New School for Design honored young innovators again this year. Parsons senior Hannah Smith won the second edition of a footwear design competition sponsored by the men’s shoe brand. Smith’s Bleecker Street boot riffed on post-war American design. The silhouette was inspired by a 1950s workboot, updated with color and perforated leather detail. Her design will be produced as part of the Allen Edmonds collection. “We’re confident the Bleecker Street boot will be a favorite among young men looking for a versatile shoe that can be worn for work or casual,” Paul Grangaard, Allen Edmonds’ president and CEO, said in a statement. “The perforated cap toe gives a modern spin to the traditional chukka. We are continually impressed by millennials’ ability to reinvent classic American style.”
Skechers’ Home Run
Skechers’ Relaxed Fit men’s line is adding former baseball player Pete Rose to its family. Rose will appear in ads this fall for the footwear line. He joins other sports figures including Joe Montana, Mark Cuban and Joe Namath, who have all appeared in the Relaxed Fit marketing. The campaign includes a television spot and print, digital and in-store advertising through 2015. “Our Relaxed Fit from Skechers campaign has been so successful because fans love seeing sports icons off the field,” Skechers President Michael Greenberg said in a release. “We’re thrilled to bring Pete Rose on board and have a fantastic concept that plays to his unmatched talent and, of course, his notoriety as well. Pete will help drive the message that our comfortable footwear is the ideal way to help you stay relaxed in any situation.”
Cole Haan bowed a new customization initiative at six stores. Shoppers in Chicago, Boston, Atlanta, New York and Destin, Fla., will be able to add their own elements to the brand’s classic Grant Driver moccasin. The in-store concept, called The Driver Shop, will have special designers on hand to help assemble the final look. The concept runs through the end of the year. In addition to the in-store shops, Cole Haan will launch an e-commerce component and a social media campaign in conjunction with the initiative.