Packer Shoes, Puma and Sneaker Freaker hosted a star-studded celebration Wednesday night before the Thursday opening of Bloodbath NYC pop-up shop at the Refinery Hotel. The shop will be open to the public until Sept. 7.
Bloodbath, using Puma’s Trinomic Blaze of Glory silhouette, has a retail price of $170. In addition to the shoe, the pop-up shop will sell Bloodbath apparel, including hooded sweatshirts, t-shirts, shorts and hats.
The shoe, drawing inspiration from the New Jersey shark attacks of 1916 (also the inspiration for the film Jaws), boasts a creamy crimson red leather-and-mesh upper with black accents, white and mint outsole, a gum bottom and metallic gold Puma branding.
The pop-up shop at the Refinery Hotel, located at 63 W. 38th Street, is open Thursday from 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sunday from 11 a.m.-7 p.m., and Monday from 12-6 p.m.
In attendance for the event was current NBA free agent (formerly of the Orlando Magic) Ben Gordon, Wu Tang Clan rap star Raekwon (who collaborated with Packer Shoes and Diadora on the recent Purple Tape N.9000 release), and rapper Mehyem Lauren.
The shoe is the third release in the trilogy between Australia-based magazine Sneaker Freaker and Puma, and the first that Packer Shoes has been a part of. The idea of releasing a third shark attack-themed shoe came from the backlash Sneaker Freaker received when fans were unable to purchase its second collaboration with Puma, Sharkbait, via its web store.
“One of the biggest mistakes I could have made was underestimating how good that shoe would do. We made 50 pairs and there were something like 60,000 people on our web shop all trying to buy 50 pairs,” Simon “Woody” Wood, owner of Sneaker Freaker, told FN at the event. “People lost it, they went straight on our Facebook calling us all sorts of filthy names. One person made a comment, ‘they should do a red shoe and call it a bloodbath, because that’s what happened today.’ I always had that in the back of my head.”
Mike Packer, owner of Teaneck, N.J.-based retailer Packer Shoes, became involved with the release after a long-distance conversation with Wood.
“After the last release you just think of ideas and after talking one day over Skype we’re like, ‘we could do one last one based off of sharks, a blood in the water type of one’ after the [Sharkbait] one came out,” he said.
Kadeem Williams, a 29-year-old Brooklyn resident, was fortunate enough to pick up the prior collaborations and camped out in front of the hotel overnight for Bloodbath.
“[I like] the color scheme, the texture, the suede, especially the gum bottom. And I have all the other colorways that were released,” he said.