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Keds-Loomstate launch green designer collection for Barneys

Jun '09
Keds, the all-American footwear brand, announced the launch of a unique designer collaboration with Barneys New York & Loomstate, a design house dedicated to utilizing organic cotton in its products, that will result in an innovative "green" designer collection, Keds by Loomstate, exclusively available at select Barneys New York stores nationwide.

The collection includes five prints based on the Keds classic Champion silhouette, each comprised of 100% certified organic uppers and linings, nickel free eyelets and 100% recycled insole boards. To further reduce the product's carbon footprint, Keds will take recycled shoeboxes and re-purpose them as the shoeboxes for the Keds by Loomstate collection.

"It could not be more perfect timing to bring into the fashion forefront the rich, classic, American heritage that Keds initiated in 1916," said Julie Gilhart, senior vice president, fashion director of Barneys New York. "Mixing the tradition of Keds with the new stylish, organic culture of Loomstate and the search for integrity and quality of product at Barneys makes for an amazing project and a perfect collaboration."

The new footwear collection is also philanthropic with a percentage of proceeds donated to The Organic Exchange through 1% For The Planet. The mission of The Organic Exchange is to deliver sustained environmental, economic and social benefits through expansion of organic agriculture.

In 1916, Keds launched the world's first sneaker, inventing the new footwear category and the term, sneaker, which was coined in 1917 by Henry Nelson McKinney, the advertising agent for Keds, because the rubber sole made the shoe quiet. Rogan Gregory and Scott Mackinlay Hahn of Loomstate drew from Keds rich brand heritage and iconic history to reinterpret the classic Champion style for the new designer collection.

"The Keds Champion epitomizes timeless function and was born out of smart industrial minds; it's an honor to apply our nature-inspired prints and organic cotton commitment to this cool, iconic American classic," said Hahn.

Gregory and Hahn used vibrant nature-inspired prints on a softened canvas to give a lived-in look to achieve a collection that exemplifies effortless style reflective of both Keds and Loomstate.

"The classic Champion offers the perfect organic canvas for an eco-friendly designer collaboration," said Kristin Kohler Burrows, president of Keds. "A partnership of this scope with a prestigious fashion leader such as Barneys New York represents a major milestone for the Keds brand. Loomstate's unmatched credibility and innovation in the organic apparel space adds relevance, depth and timeless style to the project."

Keds by Loomstate will be sold at select Barneys New York locations nationwide and Barneys.com. In addition,the collection will be featured in co-branded advertising through photographs taken by Victor Demarchelier,son of world-acclaimed photographer Patrick Demarchelier. To further support the collection at retail, Barneys New York will roll out a series of national window displays, designed by creative director Simon Doonan, as well as a video.

keds Corporation

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