On the court, Coco Gauff’s wardrobe consists of the usual tennis garb: sleek tanks, skorts built for extreme movement, an athletic dress here or there; all garments meant to help the star athlete move faster than her opponent.
But when it came time to develop her collection with New Balance, Gauff eschewed the pieces typical of her sport and opted instead for what any other current 17-year-old Gen Z’er might choose to wear: ’90s-inspired athleisure. The collaboration, out now, is full of fun separates that have nothing to do with tennis — and little to do with sports, even.
“I loved working with the design team on the inspiration boards and seeing it fully come to life at the photo shoot was a dream come true,” Gauff said in a release for the collection release, which debuted Thursday online with both New Balance and Foot Locker. “I wanted to push it with the graphics and fit of the collection so I am pumped to finally see it in store and let fans get their hands on it.”
In place of the New Balance 996V3 or 996V4 tennis shoes that Gauff has been known to wear on the court, the new collection consists of just one sneaker, the a lifestyle-driven 327 shoe, which the star designed in a tennis-white upper with a cotton candy pink “N” logo on the outside and a swipe of red on the inside. And instead of any skorts and athletic dresses, ready-to-wear pieces include windbreakers, matching joggers, bike shorts and cutout crop tops, all of which could easily be worn with jeans, boots or other daywear items (and certainly with the rest of the ’90s-inspired fashion out there).
“Coco is an exceptional young woman on and off the court. We wanted to make sure that the same excitement Coco brought to all our design meetings was reflected in her collection ,” said Brittany Branch, New Balance Senior Product Manager for Global Lifestyle Apparel in the release.. “When it came to the design of this collection, Coco drew a lot of inspiration from the 90’s and the energy that comes from New York City.”
Gauff introduced the collection at an in-person appearance at Foot Locker’s 34th Street location in Manhattan on Thursday. The tennis star is in New York for the U.S. Open, where she will play her first round on Monday, August 30.