Berlin's Overkill crew have remixed their 2013 KangaROOS Coil R1 colab, forging the 'Abyss Flip'. Our homies over at Sneaker Freaker Germany had a chat with Marc Leuschner from Overkill about what makes the new drop just a special as the first effort, and how it's different.
You dropped the 'Abyss' a year ago and now we've seen the 'Abyss Flip'. What's the story with this one?
The Coil R1 Abyss was a full success for KangaROOS and us. The project was taken on by the crowd, the release party went down a storm. We didn't expect such great feedback. The idea came up to celebrate the first anniversary of our first KangaROOS colab with another project and satisfy the on-going demand.
KangaROOS has celebrated the 'Made in Germany' theme for quite some time now. How was it for you to have your shoe manufactured in the homeland?
There are only a few brands left who run their own factories and are able to produce hand-made shoes here. The facilities in Muenchweiler piqued our interest. With the project, we want to bring the topic to prominence and show that such a high quality shoe can be made in Germany.
Please explain the name 'Abyss Flip'...
It's pretty simple: We got the idea to make a mirrored version of the Abyss for its first anniversary. A flip stands for an inversion. We have completely flipped the materials and colours so that the similarity to the Abyss is there while it's still a new shoe. About 90 per cent of the coloured elements are inverted: Elements which were navy are now turquoise and the other way round. Only the shade of the aqua was changed and is now in turquoise.
What was special about the production and what makes this Coil R1 'Made in Germany' stand out?
For one, we had the rare opportunity to get a minimal batch of 50 pairs made. The German production facility played a big role in this. With factories in Asia and with this small run, the project would have come to nought. Most of the time factories in other countries don't start before there's at least 600 pairs on the order form. There are always exceptions to this, but at a high cost. Plus, the personal contact to the factory management and the workers makes such a project special. We had the chance to be there, checking and selecting the materials in the factory. The option to look at all parts on site, to touch them and choose individually what is used – this is hardly ever possible in this constellation.
Does it get easier if you can witness the production of one's shoe first-hand?
It is a big advantage to have the option to choose materials and then to check if these still look and feel right after a few production steps. One can check if the result is as desired or if different things are to be tried out right there and then. It's also possible to hint at certain details on the spot. It's these details which make the difference and it's on these details that you have more influence on by being on site.
If you look at other locally produced projects, such as the Afew's 'Peanut Butter', it becomes clear that it takes more for a good colab than just a good looking shoe. Do you agree?
Definitely. Nowadays it's not only about the product itself, but the whole schmear, the story, the marketing, a beautiful set shooting, in-store events and so on. Such a project needs a whole lot of factors to work. That's also what makes it special. Every store can let their ideas run wild and prove their creativity.
What's next for Overkill, what can we expect from you guys in the near future?
There's a lot going on behind the scenes, more projects coming up, we also have some apparel in the making. Details to follow in due time.