It may not be the first musician/sneaker collaboration, or even the best, but Kanye West's Adidas x Yeezy team up is set to be the biggest. While the collection's Yeezy Boost shoes have been an unqualified hit, selling out almost instantaneously, the apparel and accessories have been a rockier road. First shown for Fall 2015, they were surprisingly well-received but the press and retailers, but upon delivery, the high prices for sweatshirts and stretch separates rattled even manufacturer Adidas, who stated that they would only be working on the shoes going forward. The Spring 2016 apparel line seems not to have materialized, and the coming Fall line boasted glittery collaborations with Balmain shown at a combination fashion presentation/album release party at Madison Square Garden that threatened to overshadow anything else that may have happened during Fashion Week. Now that the dust has settled, Adidas is back in the fold with plans for the future that include not only more Yeezy sportswear, but performance athletic wear and freestanding retail stores. A whole new division, Kanye West + Adidas has been created to produce Yeezy products for men and women based out of Adidas U.S. headquarters in Portland, Oregon.
Adidas group executive board member Eric Liedtke calls the West "a true creator who has the ability to see things others don’t". A timeline for the full flowering of the collaboration is unclear, but it seems likely that New York would be high on the list —if not at the top— of locations for one of the new stores. If there is one thing we have learned about West as a showman, it's that he doesn't like to come at these sorts of reveals in a normal way. A last minute addition to either the upcoming men's or later women's New York Fashion Weeks would not be out of the question, but then neither would a crashing of Paris Couture Week, so keep an eye out for Kanye's next sneak attack as his apparel ambitions seem, against all odds, to be taking shape in a big way.