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Stussy x Ransom by adidas Originals “Plain CS Stussy” Interview

Ransom by adidas Originals embarked on a rare collaboration this past season as they looked to Stussy Japan to offer their design aesthetic to create the “Plain CS Stussy.” Here we offer both a video as well as a short interview with the personalities involved in the project. Shin Okishima, Stussy Japan Branding Director; Daniel Bauer, Global Category Manger adidas Originals and Matt George, Ransom / Ransom by adidas Founder, all share some quick thoughts on the project.

Shin Okishima – Stussy Japan Branding Director

How involved with the project were you?
I interface with domestic and overseas collaboration partners for special projects as part of branding direction for our market, so when Stussy U.S. crew informed me of this project last year, I had a kick-off meeting with adidas Originals Tokyo team. We had carried the Ransom range at Stussy Chapter stores in Japan and they did very well. I thought it would be interesting to work with Ransom by adidas Originals.

With all the collaborations and joint projects is it still easy to find the inspiration to put the Stussy twist on items?
For me, collaborative projects only really come together with friends, or partners we have relationships with, or if there is a connection based on a mutual respect. It comes about naturally, something seems interesting or new to both sides, and so it makes sense to work together on a collaborative project. I wouldn’t say its easy, but in that sense the inspiration is really where each project starts. For this project, we knew a lot about each other’s brands already, but I was really impressed with the creativity on all sides of the collaboration, and how easy it was to communicate and work with everyone. I think the product reflects the philosophies of three brands well even though it was the first time for Stussy to collaborate with adidas Originals.

In which ways do you each feel that the shoe represents each company?
When I saw this model in the first meeting, I thought it was a good match for Stussy apparel pieces. In designing the product the focus was on the simplicity and wearability of this model. The styling is sophisticated and easily coordinated to the customer’s individual look.

We know you have a passion for photography, how does this translate into everyday life for you?
There are always themes, these images before the photo in my mind all the time.

Photography plays a huge part in promoting awareness of these products, what are your feelings on photography as a promotional medium?
Not just photography, but visual presentation in general, movies, etc. can express relation to product so strongly, they are indispensable. What we are trying to provide is the entire story of the product. Like, with Ransom, I’m impressed with their short films, their seasonal lookbooks. They tell their story with the outdoors as the backdrop leaving impressions that are strong, that stay with you. That is important.
For this season’s creation there was input from Canada, USA and Germany, but it all came to fruition in Tokyo which is why the filming was done here. I think that was a very natural flow for this project. It should be up on the net very soon, I hope you enjoy it.

Daniel Bauer – Global Category Manger adidas Originals

In which ways do you each feel that the shoe represents each company?
This project has started as “Ransom by adidas Originals for Stussy” and the shoe tongue label well conveys this initial concept. Also placing the Stüssy-LINK device on the left heel is kind of homage to Stussy as a pioneer of streetwear culture. We also decided on three colors, each representing one of the partners: silver (Stussy), black (Ransom), blue (adidas Originals).

How has the Japan market taken the Ransom by adidas collection?
Stussy chapter stores in Japan have been carrying Ransom by adidas Originals range since early collection, and their support as retailer is contributing to enhance the presence of Ransom by adidas Originals products. With this collaboration products release, awareness of Ransom products will be even better known as well as the friendship between Stussy and adidas Originals.

Are there going to be any future projects from Ransom by adidas and Stussy?
Never say never…

Matt George – Ransom / Ransom by adidas – Founder

How did this all come together?
The project stemmed from our success in the Japanese market with the help of Stussy and the adidas Originals group and obviously our deep-rooted relationship with Stussy back home. After a few conversations with Shin , Daniel , Scott Terpsta and Seta Shinsuke, we all agreed that if this was going to work the project would have to take all three companies strong identities to heart. We started to work on the shoes and after many more conversations (which is not simple logistically based on the 4 times zones), we locked in the concept for the Ransom by adidas for Stussy Alan.

Why did you choose a crepe sole?
Why not? I grew up in London and wore a lot of Clarks and Bass as a kid to school, so I have a love for a crepe sole but wanted a cleaner and updated version. The Ransom by adidas Originals Alan is a nod to some of the sensibilities of the shoes we grew up with without the geriatric thick crepe sole that comes with it.

Ransom by adidas Originals is keeping everyone on there toes these days, how much longer do we get to see this collaboration?
We have had great success to date and I only see the partnership strengthening. We will keep designing the collection to fill the void of a more casual-minded shoe brand with the quality, comfort, luxury and confidence that consumers demand. I feel very lucky to be able to work with adidas every season. It’s a dream come true.

How many pairs are being released and where can we find them?
Product will be release in all Stussy Chapter doors around the world as well as a small selection of adidas Originals concept stores.

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