It is no secret within the sneaker community; Reebok is beginning to reach the dizzying heights of its competitor’s thanks to some unbelievable collaborations and regenerating OG silhouettes. The resurgence of Reebok within the sneaker space is welcome, with both Reebok and New Balance rivalling Nike, Jordan Brand and Adidas week after week.
Going head to head with the industries elite is no small feat. Reebok’s Senior Global Product Marketing Manager Leo Gamboa generates some insane interest thanks to the eye-catching campaigns he has created. I take a look at the best Reebok releases of 2021 so far, highlighting some of the intriguing collaborations along the way.
The Beatnik is in no way a new silhouette for the sportswear brand. Far from it, actually. The Beatnik dates back to the 90s when then-Creative Director Nick O’Rorke designed the mule. The Beatnik wasn’t exactly a hit back in the day, with a cult following in Japan buying up all the hybrid-sandals stock. Fast-forward almost thirty years, though, and the Reebok Beatnik is finally getting the respect it deserves.
Nobody could have predicted the massive mulement happening across the US and most of Europe. Birkenstock’s Boston and the Beatnik are amongst sneakerheads favourite backless pieces of footwear. After a superb 2020 campaign, Reebok rolled back the years with a quilted capsule of Beatniks.
The packs drew inspiration from 90s-style quilted parkas and come equipped with a heavyweight sole unit, meaning you can rock a mule whatever the weather.
REEBOK X BODEGA 15TH ANNIVERSARY
Bodega is celebrating 15 years at the top of its craft this year. With that comes a handful of celebrations in the shape of sneaker collaborations. The team linked up with New Balance and joined forces with Reebok on two limited-edition sneakers to honour the anniversary.
We saw the team at Reebok take over the iconic Reebok Club C 85, as well as a reimagined version in the shape of the Reebok Club C Legacy. The brand tapped into its usual colour palette, opting for earthy tones throughout the designs. Dual branding also featured with the Bodega logo featuring on a flap-tab on the side of the sneakers. The perfect minimalist silhouette to show appreciation to a brand continuously delivering to its many supporters.
REEBOK X MAISON MARGIELA
A capsule much more extensive than most collaborations you are used to seeing with brands, Reebok and Maison Margiela have one of the most successful collaborative relationships in the industry. The two started working together in 2020, with some of the most insane looking Reebok Pumps you will ever see. The duo returned to the sneaker space in 2021 with a handful of colourways and silhouettes, ready to elevate everybody’s wardrobes.
A mix of Reebok Classics, Club C’s, and Instapumps feature in the 2021 collection, with classic Mason Margiela design aspects featuring throughout each sneaker. The Reebok Classic have the instantly recognisable camel-toe toebox, whilst the Club C’s appearance is crafted on a single piece of leather. The much-loved details that you usually find on a Club C are instead delicately painted across the upper.
Maison Margiela is constantly looking to push the boundaries of design. Expect the French luxury label to deliver even more mind-bending creations with Reebok in the future.
REEBOK X AWAKE NY
Awake NY holds some serious weight within the streetwear community. That is thanks to founder Angelo Baque’s experience working at Supreme New York as the brands Creative Director. Awake NY launched in 2012, but it was not until 2017 that Baque would release its first complete collection.
Baque and Reebok have worked on a handful of sneaker releases since 2020, with Awake NY taking over two of the brands most popular silhouettes, the Workout and the Instapump Fury. For the 2021 collaboration, we saw two unique versions of the Club C and Classic release under the Reebok x Awake NY banner.
The sneakers featured extremely minimal aesthetics, with the paired back design simply using high-quality leather in a cream hue. Pops of Awake blue featured across the co-branding, too. However, the subtle design difference that made this sneaker unique was the inclusion of a snakeskin pattern across the upper. The shrewd move gave the Awake Club C and Classic a new lease on life, making this collaboration a must-cop for fans of the brands, alike.
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The Reebok Question is a sneaker for the old heads amongst us. A silhouette that shot to fame in the 90s and noughties thanks to the incredible career of NBA legend Allen Iverson. Over the last few years, we have seen retro versions of sneakers boom within the industry, so it was no surprise to see Reebok re-release the Question Mid.
Unlike many sought-after releases these days, Reebok has not made access to the Question extremely limited, causing an influx of resellers to pick up the shoe. The Allen Iverson signature silhouette has been accessible for everybody that wanted a pair, with many colourways dropping over the last few months, with the Celtic/Green Toe low a favourite of mine.
A refreshing approach for a brand to take and one I hope that competitors adopt moving forward.
‘BOK BOYS AND GIRLS UNITE
Reebok has continuously remained at the top of the food chain within the sportswear industry. This accomplishment is despite its competitor’s massive popularity, partly down to their sponsored stars. I think that alone reflects the great products Reebok produce year after year. I cannot wait to see what else Reebok achieves over the coming months, and with Leo Gamboa involved, I already know I will like it.