Yesterday, Emily Oberg confirmed her new role as creative lead for Kith Women, which was previously handled by the shop’s founder Ronnie Fieg.
Oberg plans to bring her previous experience and existing interests together to help Kith sustain a demand for women’s products that has been rising in tandem with Fieg’s retail expansion into Miami and Aspen. But most importantly, the 23-year-old Canadian aims to add an authentic voice and direction behind the women’s collection, which is currently housed in a Snarkitecture-designed storefront on Bleecker Street in New York City.
As Oberg begins her work with the Kith design team, we sat down with her for an exclusive interview, where she forecasts what lies ahead in her new vocation.
First, why did you decide to leave Complex?
Though I’m extremely grateful for the opportunities they gave me, and everything I learned while I was there, it ultimately wasn’t what I wanted to do, and I always knew that. The way it happened and how I started with them was such a crazy random instance, I had to take the opportunity, and I’m so glad I did, it truly was the best 3 years of my life. But being on camera is not what fulfills me, it’s fun and it gives you great exposure, but it’s not something I am deeply passionate about.
I’ve always wanted to be in a position where I can create and bring my ideas to life. This new role allows me to do exactly that. I also don’t love being on camera, I am pretty shy and to myself, and it really forces you to come out of your shell. I much prefer to be behind the scenes, making things or creating something from scratch. The best feeling in the world is to be able to bring an idea to fruition and see it in a tangible form.
I’ll also say that leaving Complex was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. I describe it as one of the worst breakups I’ve ever been through, it was one of those things where no one did anything particularly wrong, but the time had come for us to part ways and there wasn’t anything that could have made me stay, because of what I ultimately wanted to do with my life. I’m still sad about it, I don’t think I’ll ever really get over it. But keeping Get Sweaty is a way for me to continue that relationship in some small way. I have nothing but love for everyone there.
At the end of 2016, you modelled for Kith Women, did you ever think about working for Kith at that point?
I hadn’t yet decided that I was leaving Complex, so I wasn’t thinking too much about other jobs yet.
You just started at Kith, when will we first see your ideas and designs in stores?
Right now, we are working on some graphic T-shirts for summer, along with some exciting collaborations that I can’t go into detail about. The first full collection will be for Fall 2017.
How did you first meet Ronnie Fieg?
I think one of the first times I met Ronnie was when I interviewed him for Complex, funny enough! It was the opening of the expansion of the Broadway store, and Complex did a video feature on it. I wasn’t in the video, but I interviewed him and directed the piece.
Kith was voted best store of 2016 by Highsnobiety readers, how will you be working with Kith’s Women store and what can we expect?
It was. An incredible feat! In my role, I will be giving input on what brands make sense to align ourselves with. There are so many brands out there today but it’s important to be selective about who you work with and that the partnership makes sense for both sides. We don’t want to do anything that isn’t well-thought out.
Some previous Kith Women drops were focused around activewear, will we see that continue, if so why?
Yes of course! I think a big part of streetwear is the athletic and technical aspect of it. Not to mention – pretty much everyone is into working out these days, it’s just part of the lifestyle. We will continue creating beautiful activewear that is both functional and stylish. I also think there is a void in the athletic wear market, I have yet to see a line that incorporates technical aspects while also being fashionable and clean enough to wear out, and mix in with other pieces from your wardrobe. We will fill that void.
Out of Ronnie Fieg’s catalog of sneaker collaborations, do you have any favorites?
By far the BAPE collab! The Bapesta is one of my favorite shoes, and played such an important role in street culture especially in the mid-2000s, it’s a staple for any sneaker/streetwear fan and I think Ronnie’s execution with the sand-colored suede was absolute perfection.
Now, check out Emily Oberg and DJ Khaled in Get Sweaty:
- Main & Featured Image: Courtesy