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Synthesis: Maison Margiela x Reebok

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Maison Margiela trompe l'oeil wallpaper

The on-going collaboration of Maison Margiela X Reebok continues as the design duo are set to drop their newest iteration of the cult favorite Club C court sneaker. A key ingredient to the formula of this collaboration is the synthesis of the Maison’s codes and iconic techniques onto Reebok's line-up of renowned silhouettes.

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Maison Margiela x Reebok Club C Sneaker in white.
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Maison Margiela x Reebok Club C Sneaker in black.

In the next chapter of this collaboration, set to drop March 24th we see Maison Margiela infusing their illusory code of the trompe l’oeil onto the surface of the Club C trainer. Trompe l’oeil has been a key signature of the house and was first debuted at Martin Margiela’s first runway show in 1989 when he sent down the infamous trompe l'oeil (optical illusion) Tattoo shirt (Now residing in the Met Museum). The motifs on the garment (seen below) were taken from a nineteenth century encyclopedic illustration about tattooed men on the island of Nuku Hiva, in French Polynesia. The house continues to cleverly utilize the code to fool the eye of their consumer.

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Maison Margiela trompe l'oeil dress from 1989
Spring 1989. Maison Martin Margiela first show. Courtesy of Vogue.
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Maison Margiela trompe l'oeil dress from Spring Summer 2009
Spring 2009. Photo: Marcio Madeira. Model: Asia Bugajska.
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Maison Margiela trompe l'oeil sleeveless dress
Spring 1996. Photo: Peter Ashworth.

The Reebok Club C trainer; “C” standing for “champion” since 1985, receives the full Margiela treatment. What would appear to be the familiar classic club trainer upper leather-front is in actuality the Maison’s trompe l'oeil in full effect, don't be fooled*. A 2D scan of the original Club C is applied to the surface of the shoe mimicking every line, stitch, and shadow to create a forced 3 dimensional perspective.

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Maison Margiela Club C sneaper vamp details
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Maison Margiela Club C sneaper rear details

The fusion of the avant garde trope onto a classic cult sportswear sneaker creates a design that is both pragmatic and novel. An approachable shoe silhouette that exudes a zeitgeisty 90’s nostalgia, juxtaposed with a transgression and heritage of an avant garde fashion house. The sum total being an amalgamation that unifies function and fashion and subverts convention. A collaborative cocktail that can stir up mass appeal and be just unique enough to not isolate the purist and core customer of the labels. We look forward to seeing what Reebok staples go under the knife next at the deconstructionist House of Maison Margiela.

Shop the Maison Margiela x Reebok Club C Sneakers below.