Culture

Keds Latest Designs Proves That Avoiding Cultural Appropriation In Fashion Is Totally Possible

It’s always really cool to see a big name brand embrace the art of our Latinidad. It’s like a nod to all of the great Latinx artisans who add beauty and color to our culture. In fact, seeing consumers enthusiastically welcome these goods feels like further validation. With this in mind, it makes this new collaboration all the sweeter for us art and fashion lovers.

Keds is collaborating with designers Thelma Dávila and Lolita Mia on a line inspired by the Latina-created brands.

Instagram / @Keds

In what the shoe company is calling a “collaboration fiesta,” Keds released three fun and vibrant new designs.

Some of the shoes borrow inspiration from Thelma Dávila’s colorful Guatemalan textiles. Alternatively, other pairs utilize Lolita Mia’s festive fringe as embellishments. These touches combine with Keds’ original platform shoes to make a unique product.

Of the partnership with these new brands, Keds’ website says:

“It’s so rewarding to be able to be a part of the professional and personal growth of women who decided to follow their dreams. Entrepreneurs (especially female ones) are always brave, they’re risk-takers that believe strongly in themselves. And we believe in them too. We’re so excited to introduce you to our latest for-women-by-women collaborations.”

The Thelma Dávila brand is named after its Guatemalan founder.

Keds

The company specializes in designing and crafting unique pieces by hand. Furthermore, their products utilize Guatemalan textiles, leathers and non-leather materials. Obviously, this collaboration is built on a solid relationship between the two brands. Since last year, Keds retail locations have carried Thelma Dávila bags and products in stores.

On their website, Keds said the design collaborations were intent on “taking geometric design and color cues from [Dávila’s] native culture, our classic Triple Kick gets transformed into a fiesta-ready standout.”

Founded by jewelry artisan and entrepreneur, Elena Gil, Lolita Mia is a Costa Rican accessory brand.

Keds

While studying abroad in Italy, Gil made a significant personal discovery. She realized that ethnic crafts and traditions were very alike across regions. Specifically, they were similar in cultural importance. In light of this, she decided to start her own brand. Lolita Mia’s handmade products embrace what Gil has coined a “Universal Ethnic Luxury.”

Of the collaboration with Lolita Mia, Keds’ website reads:

“[The] aesthetic shines through in these playful renditions of our platforms in the form of fun, festive fringe and punchy tropical shades.”

The Ked × Lolita Mia collaboration has two designs while the Ked x Thelma Dávila collab is made up of one.

Instagram / @lolitamiacr

“Triple Tassel” is a multicolored platform with purple, pink, orange and white tassels attached to the laces. “Triple Decker Fringe” is an off-white platform slip-on with multi-colored fringe and golden embellishments on top. The “Triple Kick” features a neutral platform with Guatemalan textile accents around the bottom.

Each design is priced at $70 a pair. Moreover, they are available exclusively on Keds’ website. Be sure to order yours today and add a little extra Latinx flare to your summer looks.

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This Oaxacan Artist Is Turning Sneakers Into Her Canvas For Día De Muertos And The Results Are Incredible

Fierce

This Oaxacan Artist Is Turning Sneakers Into Her Canvas For Día De Muertos And The Results Are Incredible

dorisarellano_pintora / Instagram

As the Coronavirus pandemic has brought to a halt economies and countries around the world, it’s also helped shutter the businesses of artists who rely on galleries and street markets to sell their creations.

Mexico is one of the world’s hardest hit countries and artists in the country have had to get creative to find new clients and customers amid a global pandemic.

However, with the rising popularity of bespoke sneaker collections, one Oaxacan artist seems to have found the winning formula.

A Oaxacan artist has made sneakers her canvas and she’s highlighting her culture in this new medium.

Credit: dorisarellano_pintora / Instagram

Mexico has been one of the world’s hardest hit countries by the Covid-19 pandemic. Coronavirus-related restrictions have indefinitely closed millions of businesses across the country as tourists stopped coming to the country.

As these restrictions have impacted the livelihoods of millions of Mexicans, many have been forced to get creative. For one artist from Oaxaca, Doris Arellano Manzo, the choice was clear: a canvas is a canvas — it could be stretched over a wooden frame or stretched over a pair of athletic shoes.

Like other artists worldwide who are succeeding at beating the pandemic’s economic challenges to their careers, Arellano is learning to adapt — to be less conventional and to think quite literally a bit smaller: she now paints her art on sneakers.

Thanks to the pandemic, Arellano felt she needed to reinvent herself and her craft.

It all started in July when Arellano and her daughter Frida – a communications and social media professional, realized that Arellano needed to think outside the traditional. It was obvious that museums and galleries would likely remain closed for sometime, so how else could they bring her art to her clients?

“Since I love to paint, I can paint for you on a large canvas just as well as I can on a small one,” she recently told the newspaper Milenio. “As far as I’m concerned, while you have me here with my paints and paintbrushes, I’m thrilled.”

Each pair of shoes is unique, she said, “because it’s all done by hand, not by machine.” She describes her style as “traditionalist contemporary,” and says she is drawn to evoking the rites and customs of Oaxacan traditional culture.

Her Día de Muertos collection is garnering international attention.

Credit: dorisarellano_pintora / Instagram

Arellano’s latest collection features shoes with colorful abstract designs in bright cempasúchil orange, with lush floral wreaths and, of course, featuring the iconic Día de Muertos Catrina.

The collection was timed perfectly since so many are looking for non-traditional art amidst a very non-traditional year.

Her latest collection of work, all painted on athletic footwear, is entitled after the celebration she’s commemorating, Día de Muertos.

She says her collections are an homage to traditional Oaxacan festivities that couldn’t take place in 2020.

Credit: dorisarellano_pintora / Instagram

In addition to her recently released Día de Muertos collection which has been very popular, Arellano has created art with other Oaxacan themes.

In fact, when she first began her art-themed sneaker collection in July, at Friday’s suggestion, her sneaker art was based on the enormous festival of Guelaguetza. The Guelaguetza is a traditional Oaxaca cultural festival that had to be canceled this year due to the pandemic.

In some ways, she said, the enforced isolation of the pandemic has been a huge challenge for artists like herself, but in other ways, it’s actually been familiar.

“The work of an artist is a bit enclosed,” she admitted. “We go out when there are exhibits, when we have to go introduce ourselves in public or do interviews.”

Still, she said, the pandemic caught the art community flatfooted.

“Artists don’t have a way to show their work during the pandemic,” she said. “It’s all been halted, and we have to go back and look for new formats for the public to see what we are doing.”

It seems like 2020 has been the year of handcrafted sneaker lines.

Although Arellano is working hard to infuse her own culture into her art and her new sneaker line, she isn’t the first to do so. Just this year Nike released its take on the traditional holiday with a Día de Muertos-themed sneaker collection that had fans of both the holiday and the sneaker company excited for.

Then we got news that Bad Bunny was releasing a custom Crocs line – which flew off the shelves and are now selling for more than four times the original retail price. Plus, recent rumors say that Bad Bunny will also be launching an Adidas collaboration at some point in early 2021.

People have long been obsessed with bespoke sneaker collections, but thanks to the pandemic people are looking for new ways to support artists and satisfy their shopping cravings. We can’t think of a better way than by supporting local Indigenous artists like Arellano.

You can get more information here.

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First Crocs, Now Adidas: Bad Bunny To Launch Major Collaboration And Here’s What We Know So Far

Entertainment

First Crocs, Now Adidas: Bad Bunny To Launch Major Collaboration And Here’s What We Know So Far

Omar Vega / Getty Images

It seems like 2020 has been the year of sneaker collaborations – or in Bad Bunny’s case – Crocs collaborations. From Bad Bunny to J Balvin, Travis Scott to Christian Dior, it seems that everyone is trying to get their name on a fresh pair of sneakers.

And I’m not complaining. I love a good shoe collaboration as much as the next guy, however, news of a possible Adidas and Bad Bunny collaborations has me extra excited since both of those are my favorites of their respective worlds. For me: Adidas is to the sneaker world what Bad Bunny is to reggaetón.

So far there haven’t been a lot of details released by either San Benito nor Adidas but this is what we do know.

Adidas x Bad Bunny will be releasing an epic sneaker collection early next year.

It’s just weeks after Bad Bunny’s custom Crocs basically broke the Internet and we’re already getting news (or at least rumors) of a possible Adidas x Bad Bunny collaboration happening soon. According to a story by Complex, Bad Bunny is about to bring more of his signature looks to your sneaker collection.

The Complex story says that a source familiar with the brand’s product plans for next year told them about the likely collab. However, neither Adidas nor Bad Bunny have announced the sneaker and wouldn’t confirm the project when reached for comment. If true though, the kicks would likely arrive as part of the sportswear brand’s Spring/Summer 2021 offerings.

In a photo Complex shared of the rumored sneaker, we get a possible first look at the soon-to-be sold out sneaker. The color palette featured on the Puerto Rican’s take on the Forum silhouette looks quite similar to his crocs with all-beige detailing that very well may also be glow-in-the-dark. The kicks seem to feature light blue design details on the sole and side sole of the shoes.

An Adidas x Bad Bunny collab will likely do as well or even better then his recent Crocs launch.

If rumors are true, the Forum would be El Conejo Malo’s first sneaker collaboration, although he already has a wildly-successful Crocs line that he released in September. And fans have proven themselves willing to go to great lengths to get their hands on Bad Bunny anything basically (myself included!).

The Crocs retail for $60 USD but are already being resold for more than $200 USD on sites like e-bay. Not to mention that the Crocs launch left many fans disappointed because of their instant success – the line sold out within minutes.

When the collab was initially announced, Bad Bunny called himself a “longtime fan” of the famous brand, adding that he hoped his version inspires his fans to “have their own fun with their personal style and wearing what makes them happy.”

He even got a little sentimental, adding: “I believe in being true and not placing limitations on myself, which is also something Crocs represents, and this is the message I always want to make sure I send out to my fans.”

For those of you who aren’t well-versed in Croc lingo, Jibbitz charms are jewelry-like flair you can pin through the holes of your Crocs. The Bad Bunny x Crocs Jibbits reference his music from his recent YHLQMDLG album–fire emojis, stars, planets, a man holding a sign that says: zona de perreo. And, of course, there was a bunny Jibbit as well.

It’s no secret that Bad Bunny is a sneaker lover.

In a 2018 episode of Sneaker Shopping on Complex, Bad Bunny explained his footwear history, saying that his native Puerto Rico was lacking in boutique stores.

“Ever since I was a child, I’ve liked sneakers,” Bad Bunny said then.

He’s not the only Latin trap artist that’s expected to release their own shoe soon. Colombian reggaeton star J Balvin said in an April interview with High Snobiety that his Air Jordan 1 collaboration was supposed to launch in November. Jordan Brand hasn’t confirmed this news.

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