This January marked the ten year anniversary of that iconic white sneaker designed by Swedish designer, Erik Schedin. To celebrate, Erik teamed up with COMME des GARÇONS SHIRT to release a second rendition of the model, this time offering three unique graphics to accompany that slick leather body. We figured this would make for a good time to sit down with the designer at his Stockholm flat and workspace to get a better idea of what he’s been up to.
Images: Marcus Wilén/Selectism
Can you tell us a bit about the process and inspiration behind creating that first pair of iconic white, leather shoes?
I designed the shoes 2004 for my final degree at Beckman's College of Design, Stockholm. The idea was to make a pair of timeless classic sneakers, which I could wear for years. I started with two models; the high cut in black and the white low cut, both in leather with a perforated leather lining. At that time they were the first of their kind, without any logos or labels.
Was it always the plan to keep things minimal and “selective”?
Keeping everything minimal and selective has been one of the corner stones of the project from the very beginning. The idea was to combine products that tell a story, products that give the visitor of my website a view of who I am and what I stand for.
Will we ever see a full range of Erik Schedin pieces? Or will you continue to keep us on our toes?
Hehe, for now my current plan is along the same path as the last 10 years, but you never know.
How does it feel to see so many brands influenced by that first sneaker?
It felt strange in the beginning when seeing shoes so similar to mine where both model and choice of color for each model were exactly the same. Since these shoes also had the specific sole that I had been searching for while sourcing Italian manufacturers back in 2005 it felt even more peculiar.
Did you find it frustrating?
Actually not, anger and frustration isn't something that brings you forward.
How did the Comme des Garçons collaboration come about?
Since I've been selling at Dover Street Market in London I had a few contacts there who asked me about a possible collaboration. It felt like a great opportunity of course, and it also coincided perfectly with the 10 year anniversary of my sneakers. Also, being a huge fan of Comme des Garçons for nearly half my life it's like a dream come true, so I didn't hesitate a second.
Any future collaboration plans?
No, no new/other plans for now, let's see what the future brings.
Where do you find the inspiration for your designs?
I start with identifying something I feel is missing, something I have a personal need for. When I have identified what kind of product to do, I dig deeper and try to find as much information as possible.
What do you believe makes a good product- and how do you choose which make it to your shop?
I believe in products or concepts that tells a story and when things are there for a reason. It doesn't necessarily need to reflect my personal taste or style, I find a lot of other things inspiring and interesting as long as they contain these elements. The items in my store are of course something different. I'm trying to do stuff that completes the rest of the assortment that adds on to the overall story.