While Kim Jones has confessed he is not nostalgic, the designer knows the values of a brand’s DNA and has a keen viewpoint on how to honor its future. With his debut Converse collection, Jones reflects on the archetypes of contemporary streetwear, each a classic piece of American sportswear, and delivers a contemporary perspective from head to toe.
“There was an aesthetic that really interested me. It was all the same nerdy things that made people that like the kind of clothes we like see the value,” Jones says of American mid-century staples. “I looked at the Japanese designers readapting American sportswear — recreating that fifties and sixties look. Obviously, Converse was the key shoe within all that stuff. Now, I’m just putting it all together in a different way.”
Taking cues from his studied knowledge of sportswear and streetwear, Jones pulls in contemporary utilitarian elements to inform wonderfully subtle updates to the Converse Chuck 70.
“The design approach for the shoe was very straight forward — taking a classic shoe and then almost encasing it in something to protect it,” says Jones.
With the approach, Jones adds a transparent TPU cage with speed lace eyelets that adhere to the refined 12-ounce canvas upper, providing reinforced foot stability. The outsole is also reengineered with an enhanced diamond grid to help increase traction on city streets. The shoe takes two tonal colorways, each with Kim Jones branding stamped on tongue and sockliner.
Completing the collection are four garments: a Parka, Crewneck Sweatshirt, Cargo Pant, and T-Shirt. “There’s an easy look to each of the pieces,” says Jones. “I wanted each to be a modern version of the ‘Take Ivy’ vibe.”
Crafted in a combination of nylon and mesh, the Parka is water-resistant and features a front storm flap with zipper closure, interior storm flap and accompanying hood, bungee closure, Velcro cuffs and rear Velcro venting. The Cargo Pant, in a traditional fit, is made of cotton but with mesh elements added for breathability and snap closures flanking both legs. The Crewneck comes in brushed-back terry cotton and carries a herringbone trimming.
The Converse x Kim Jones collection releases April 8 on converse.com and at select global retailers.