KEEN had gained a fair amount of attention recently with the release of its new sandal, the UNEEK. Straying away from any previous designs, the shoe features two cords and a sole—an unusual approach that has resulted in ideal customization as far as the fit.
“We began by examining the foot, then redesigned every single piece of the shoe to best compliment the foot’s shape,” Jeff Dill, business unit director of the Trailhead category at KEEN, said in a news release. “We started with one material, the cord, and built off of that, only adding what was absolutely necessary. There is beauty and elegance in its simplicity, which promises one-of-a-kind fit and feel that is unique to UNEEK.”
But the UNEEK is just one of many new releases from KEEN. While the UNEEK hit shelves in early June, the remaining new products are scheduled for spring 2015 release. However, the UNEEK has received a few updates already for 2015.
KEEN will be releasing a casual collection of summer sandals, and showcased its first wedge heel for women during the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market. The Victoria Sandal seeks to provide a comfortable alternative to the traditional heel, incorporating the PU component into the midsole and outsole of each shoe.
“If there’s something women can agree on, it’s the importance of a solid wedge heel. A playful heel that offers comfort and stability is a staple of every wardrobe,” said Senior Merchandise Manager Johanna Koeberle in a news release.
The Victoria will retail for $110. In addition, KEEN will be releasing the City of Palms Sandal Collection, which includes the City of Palms Sandal ($95), the City of Palms Posted ($95), and the City of Palms Slide ($85) for women.
In the casual collection, there will be a full close-toed shoe, a back-strap sandal, and flip for men.
For 2015 water shoes, the brand is releasing the Zambezi Sandal ($100), which has an open upper for fast drainage as well as built-in toe protection. “There’s one strap throughout the whole thing, so it’s easy to adjust. You could wear it with socks, but please don’t,” Dill joked at Outdoor Retailer.
Also being released is the Gorgeous Boot ($150), a neoprene boot that’s perfect for kayakers and river guides. If you want a less technical option, check out the Kuta ($85), which transitions well between technical and daily wear.
For women, the Cypress ($90) is a multi-sport sandal with a stable outsole and gripping technology made for slippery surfaces.
“We worked closely with river guides and professional athletes to create these new technical styles that address the needs of watersports experts,” Dill said in a news release.
For children, KEEN will be releasing a line of flexible sandals perfect for a multitude of activities. For girls, the Juliet ($55) is full of function and glitter, and works well as an everyday shoe. Also for girls, the Harper ($50) will work well around water because of its traction and rubber outsoles.
For boys, the Riley ($45) is a great toddler sandal that offers plenty of stretch. For kids of all ages, the Rio ($40) is a lightweight, technical sandal with a good price point.
“We know kids tend to live in their sandals all summer long,” Erin Simons, product line manager for KEEN Kids, said in a news release. “KEEN is already known as the sandal resource for kids’ summer fun—this season we used that sandal expertise to create styles that look great and are ready for any adventure.”
Socks and Bags
Angela Ireton, the marketing manager for socks and bags, detailed five features of each pair of KEEN socks—Wunderseam, left and right specific, engineered breathability, great stability and arch support, and the ability to secure the foot with a no-slip heel hold. The new sock collection for spring 2015 is the Springbok Collection. “This is our premium, multi-sport collection for hiking, biking, etc.” Ireton said.
Once every few years, KEEN does a Harvest Story, where the brand repurposes materials into new products. This year, it’s old paragliders that are being turned into a variety of bags.
“If you get one tear in a paraglider, you can’t use it,” Ireton said. “So we repurposed them into bags. We have a daypack and a sling, and you’ll see the breadth of uniqueness in these bags because you can see the seams from the paragliders. We even use the parachute cord as the zipper pull.”
For more information, check out the KEEN website.
Images courtesy of KEEN