Has there even been a pair of shoes whose design were inspired by ceramics? Not to my knowledge, and that’s what makes this collaboration between Los Angeles ceramicist Ben Medansky and New York shoe brand Koio so remarkable. Medansky is well-known for his bold ceramics, which feature speckled glazes and pops of Yves Klein blues, odd, geometric clusters, and repetition of angular shapes.
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Applying those same principles to a pair of sneakers sounds challenging, but the resulting outcome couldn’t have turned out more perfect. What catches your eyes first is obviously the cobalt blue sole of the shoe, which is such a stunning color. Complimenting it is the speckled leather uppers which bring a nice balance to the shoe, as it would be in Medansky’s ceramic works.
“The speckle on the leather was appropriated from the clay body I use that has a high iron content. I also wanted to create something that I had not seen before which led me to the ceramic accent on the laces that I call shoellery, like jewellery for the shoe.”
I think the “shoellery” is such a fun, quirky detail. In a time of Off-White zip ties it’s refreshing to see a natural material being integrated into a shoe like this. All in all it’s an unusual but beautifully executed collaboration. You can snag a pair of these for yourself by clicking here.