Nike not for fashion lovers

Mark Parker

Nike doesn’t set out to be a favorite for luxury fashion lovers.

The sports giant’s CEO Mark Parker says that first and foremost it is a brand for athletes, but that some of its designs naturally cross over into the world of fashion.

Loved by celebrities such as Kristen Stewart, Rihanna and Jessica Biel, Nike’s latest footwear is often a sought after accessory. This is especially true when catwalk trends dictate that sports lux is still big news.

“Our motivation isn’t to make products that resonate with the luxury fashion consumer. But the nature of what we do, the design and the inspiration, I think sometimes makes it part of that world,” Mark admitted to British newspaper The Telegraph. “People adopt it, and put together as part of a statement they want to make. Comfort is a factor, too. But again, while the aesthetic is important we are not a designer for fashion per se.”

Nike is no stranger to famous collaborations and endorsements, previously working with sports star Tiger Woods. Most recently the brand has teamed up with Givenchy’s creative director Riccardo Tisci to produce a range of high-end fashion trainers.

But at the heart at the brand will always be the need for shoes that provide the right support for those partaking in sport.

“When athletes look at themselves in the mirror and are ready to compete, it is like an actor going out on stage. They want to look and feel like they are ready to do what they do. You want to be fast, you want to be strong, you want to be intimidating – you might want to be a peacock, too. That psychological element is incredibly important. To get into their heads, not only in terms of what they want from performance – fit, traction, cushioning, whatever – but also in terms of what kind of aesthetic they are looking for, is part of the equation,” Mark explained.

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