Italia Independent Links With Vans

The 600 limited edition Independent Chukka styles were launched in Milan during Fashion’s Night Out.

Only 600 pairs of shoes were produced.
Appeared In
Special Issue
Men'sWeek issue 09/15/2011

Italia Independent has added a new international collaboration to its already diversified portfolio, teaming up with Vans to launch a limited edition of its chukka-style shoe.

This story first appeared in the September 15, 2011 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

“It took about two years to develop this project,” said Andrea Tessitore, co-founder and chief executive officer of Italia Independent. “We think that this first collaboration with an international company confirms the success of our brand, which has always aimed to bring a touch of style and creativity to icons already recognized by the markets. We want to give our customers unique products without expecting to invent something new, but trying to be different and innovative.”

Designed by Renato Montagner, a collaborator of Italia Independent’s since the beginning, the gray and black shoe is created out of Kevlar, which guarantees technological performance and makes it almost indestructible. A reference to I-I founder Lapo Elkann and the brand’s passion for sport cars is underscored by a double-knit fabric used in cars, and leather on the most sensitive points to prevent wear and tear. To complete the redesign of the shoe, Montagner embellished it with the I-I and Vans logos on the sides, the “Be Independent” motto on the back, while the phrase “Being independent means writing one’s story everyday” is printed on the laces. In addition, the soles feature the Italian flag and an “Italianized” version of the American flag, with green, red and white stars and stripes. The shoe’s box is also decorated with American and Italian flags.

“The chukka is a super popular and iconic shoe in the USA and I wanted to exalt its heritage adding a pinch of glamour,” explained Montagner.

“Vans recalls the American dream, the skater universe, the Californian style, which are all elements that are part of the I-I identity.”

The 600 limited edition Independent Chukka styles were launched at the Banner store in Milan during Fashion’s Night Out and are available for 245 euros, or $340 at current exchange, at the brand’s flagships in Italy and online on italiaindependent.com.