WITH light being shed on Ronnie Fieg’s KITH installation opening in London Selfridges, it seemed appropriate to delve into history behind the man – and possibly one of his most iconic collaborations to date.
Fieg was born and raised in Queens, NYC, where he started out working as a stock-room runner at his uncle’s trainer store, David Z. This was at the age of 13, he then went on to be store manager and eventually head buyer. You may remember a few incredibly limited, excessively vibrant David Z x Asics collaborations – Fieg designed those for the sneaker-front.
In 2011, KITH opened its first flagship store, of which they boast a total of five stores in partnership with design firm Snarkitecture. 2015 saw KITH’s first Treatsshop open; a trainer store turned cereal bar. Odd one, right?
But the most mentionable moment in his career is undoubtedly the original release of his coveted ‘Super Green’ Gel Lyte III collaboration.
What makes this release so special, so sought after? Well, the fact that a tiny handful of the 300 pairs made were actually sold to F&F and loyal customers.
Between 2010-2013, the small island of Haiti fell victim to a series of natural disasters. 2010’s earthquake notched a house-destroying 7.0 on the Richter scale – then soon after things started to look up for the LEDC, Hurricane Sandy in 2013 causes a food shortage and potentially affecting over 1.5 million people.
The donated shoes went to those struggling to afford basic amenities; like water, food or (obviously considering the proposal) clothing. So, each pair was sent out to those that needed them – not customers that merely wanted the shoe. There wasn’t a charity auction at the time – as we’ve seen with Jordan Brand x Carhartt x Eminem for example (well, there was a year later…). But, each pair was taken to Haiti by Fieg’s friend, Pete Forester and Soul For Souls charity (any guesses what their goal is?), to then be handed out to unfortunate victims of Haiti’s worst natural disasters in decades.
Photos courtesy of Pete Foreseter.