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It is a freaking glorious time to be a sneakerhead, because the VANS X Awake NY collab dropped today, October 15th. Vans’ classic SK8-HI has undergone a transformation via Angelo Baque’s creative eye. Baque founded streetwear label Awake NY and was Supreme’s Brand Director for 10 years. So, yes, Vans’ SK8-HI have been seriously amped up with this collab.
Supreme took skate and streetwear to another level, and with Baque at the helm, the brand changed perceptions of what a skate and streetwear should or could be. Partnering with Louis Vuitton and tossing out super limited edition items created a frenzy for anything with “Supreme” printed on it.
When Baque left Supreme to focus on his label, Awake NY, he once again raised the bar on style, design and general coolness. Along his journey, Baque has consistently supported young designers and brands. Between the Awake NY superfans and the Vans superfans, this collab is going to fly out the door. Westside Gunn (Griselda Records founder, designer and recording artist) modeled the sneaks for their lookbook lensed by photographer Shaniqwa Jarvis.
This tricked-out SK8-Hi has an East Coast meets West Coast aesthetic that’s distinctive and totally cool. How cool? You may decide to keep them in a clear Lucite box instead of wearing them. Now, let’s break down these kicks.
The Vans X Awake NY SK8-Hi collab focuses on artistically tweaking Vans’ iconic checkerboard pattern. Using batik (a dyeing process that uses wax to layer colors and create designs), combined with a digitally printed checkerboard, the signature design now has a vibrant, almost 3-D feel to it. This newly birthed SK8-Hi comes in three different colorways: in pink/black, green/blue and blue/red. Adding another burst of color are laces in a contrasting shade so that it appears as if the sneaker is vibrating with energy.
The lateral forefoot of the sneaker has Awake’s logo pressed into it. Rounding out the style are classic Van details like the white jazz stripe racing down the quarters, white wide-wall vulcanized midsoles and suede toe boxes.
As mentioned earlier Baque has frequently worked with young designers and brands, and when this collaboration goes live, AWAKE NY will donate money to both the Fresh Youth Initiatives, and the Children of Promise, NYC nonprofit organizations. “As with all our collaborations, the community is the foundation,” stated Baque in a press release. “We’re looking forward to working with Fresh Youth Initiatives, and Children of Promise,NYC. With the power of Vans, Greenhouse, and Foot Locker behind us, we’re truly able to make a difference.”
The Vans x Awake NY Sk8-Hi collection goes on sale today, October,15th on the Awake NY website, and then exclusively on the Greenhouse app on October 20th. Then the collab will be available for purchase exclusively at Foot Locker on October 22. Each pair goes for $90.00.