Tuesday, December 1, 2009
TSUBO and AHNU FOOTWEAR: SPRING 2010
“The Intersection Of Design And Comfort” + “It’s About Balance”
West 57th Street, NYC
Fashion meets functions, performance gear with style---the mantras of footwear these days--- in the growing category of athletic inspired, streetwear shoes…and action kickers that can stroll the urban byways with panache.
Tsubo "Runak" $70
Tsubo (Japanese for ‘pressure point’)- is a real value play on cool kicks . A “Euro-centric” footwear line out of London (since 1997), the collection doesn’t stint on the materials---like “premium leathers” ---
Are really comfortable …
HANWI $80 & RUTI $80
and easy on the eyes.
A platform spectator sneaker –the “Fadir” and a double strap platform wedge “Lerna” (both $95) are edgy with strong architectural elements played up by the contrasting color trims/straps…
but are user friendly---as our feet could happily wear these all day.
Natural raffia in the Elath ($70)---is a great look for summer. And ballet flats withe an edge are an alternative to those see everywhere Tory Burch samples.
Raffia also works with leather...nice here in a multi strap upper that wraps around.
CORI $100-Lugged Rubber Soles & Raffia Upper with Strap
Plus: Comfort ergonomic construction (a Tsubo MO)---with a hallowed heel and lining with pressure pads where we need it.
There are also stacked heel sandals…a peep toe in a metallic leather (Erebus $100)
and a fun stripe, double strap “Ina”- with a bold solid heel. ($120)
The Men’s collection has nifty vintage/retro-look sneakers in solids, plaid, and mixed materials-rubber, leather, canvas ($90-$100).
Our fav---the just launched cityslicker “Pelagon.”
The suede “Anville” ($150) a pull on chukka style boot and leather slip ons ($120-$130)…round out the offerings…with just enough metropolitan savvy ---
CADMUS -in Suede $130
but not too fashion forward as to be un-wearable in office environs.
INFO: Store Locator and E-Commerce: TSUBO
Ahnu’s DNA springs from from the outdoor fitness/lifestyle/travel world as its top ranks hail from shoe giants, Keen and Reebok.
It’s mantra, “It’s About Balance” sums up the Neutral Positioning System (NPS)…that is “designed to promote proper foot balance and encourage the foot’s natural bio-mechanics.” But without the weird looking heel. Ha Ha.
Styles are very task specific actually ---with several different NPS systems aimed at the intended use of the shoes…
Meaning selections for the day hikers with light packs…to the overnighters who want one pair of sandals for Bali and Barcelona…to the river rats riding the whitewaters.
We reviewed an early collection at Outdoor Retailer Tradeshow…and since then…it’s really GROWN.
For daywear an NPS –HI with a “55 Durometer EVA midsole” for shock absorption, a Vibram® EcoStep outsole that grips, and a steel shank for arch/mid-foot support make the Mary-J style platform wedges (Olivia-$99.95) city chic (mixed materials like nifty braided strap, contrast stitching) and comfy.
Athletic types who like versatility will get just that with the new "Tilden II" ($89.95) a new sport sandal in trendy black. There’s also protective toe options like “Kick” a sport Mary Jane (love) and casual options---the “Paris”---an eye catching version of competitors’ getting so boring flats....with flexible trims.
The “Pacifica” ---a watery reliable take on a t-strap but with adjustable closures---works on dry land too.
We are always in search of the perfect lightweight hiking boot that really supports us ---and we think the new "Sequoia" models might fit our needs. With slip resistant Vibram® rubber outsoles, integrated TPU shank and arch support (very important for mid foot support), a TPU heel cradle that prevents slip outs and ups- ouch for our toes (yes!) ----and upper levels made from 60 Durometer EVA-midsole for optimal shock absorption…and 70 Durometer EVA stability postings on both medial and lateral sides for neutral positioning on terrain ---we think we probably won’t feel the desperate need to rip off our boots at the end of a loooonnngggg trek.
The ‘guy’ equivalent of the aforementioned… include the breathable “Moraga Mesh” ($99.95) with a shock dispersal plate in front for stone bruising protection, toe smashing prevention.
Cross terrain runners are becoming very popular for all types of movers, including joggers who pound away on hard asphalt.
Ahnu’s cross terrain runners (M-$119.95-$124.95/W-$89.95-$99.95)) have their own NPS-the XTR…with extra cushioning, heel stabilizers, including TPU external stability struts for neutral positioning on trails…or uneven pavement.
Sport sandals, and casual styles---like the handsome “Hayes,” "Belgrove," ($99.95) and “Drake” ($94.95) slip ons…round out the men’s line.
BONUS POINTS: Summery tones like Dawn Pink. Loden Green, and Mood Indigo. And naturally, the versatile shoes enable us to pack one pair of shoes--- for the mountains and the streets…while donning the sandals for an easier airport security screening experience.
INFO: Shipments start January 2010… AHNU