Sneakerqueen x adidas Rivalry Hi

  • DESIGNED BY: Sneakerqueen
  • MADE ON: 09/13
  • FACTORY: PCI 789002

Sneakerqueen comes clean, confessing to us her absolute love of the older adidas basketball models and leading us by the hand through her journey with the brand, from start to (snakeskin) finish.

We admit it, we get excited about adidas in general, and especially when it comes to Consortium releases and furthermore to packs inspired by the community surrounding the brand. But when something like a Collectors Project is formed, we get extra gooey in the guts and fall back into absolute love with the wonderful German brand, as likely many of our fellow collectors, connoisseurs, consumers, and all-around adidas enthusiasts out there do too.

Beyond that we were just enthralled to find out exactly who was involved in this collector-designed pack being released. Just as we were with the Your Story pack back in 2012 (when we discovered that Berlin’s own Quote was to be involved) we jumped for joy again when Julia Schoierer’s name came up and we began to see promotional photos of the work she was doing with the Trefoil tribe. And now finally with the sneakers and her highness in front of us, we were lucky enough to ask a few questions and dig into the depths of her professional photographic career and poke a bit at her passion for sneakers.

Hey Julia, considering we knew you a bit before you got asked to do the project we were really happy for you to see it happen. So first of all, just congrats from us. How does it feel to be working with one of your favorite brands to design your own shoe? Can you even believe it, or did you see it coming?

Thanks a lot! I was pretty chuffed when I first got asked. After all, most collaborations are done with athletes, artists, and celebrities. adidas couldn’t have chosen a better form of appreciation, than letting me make my own shoe as a collector. Besides I feel honored to be in such great company with the other collectors for this project.

As for those four other adi-nuts, how was this experience getting to meet them all? We gotta ask too, since you represent both German collectors as well as female collectors, how was it being the only ‘queen’ on this project?

It was extra special experiencing the trip to Herzogenaurach with like-minded people. Like Emz said in the film, “we are all so different in the way we look at this thing known as collecting”. We all share the same passion but approach it from such different angles. It was exciting, getting to know a little about the others’ background and dedication. It was great to share the “oohs and awes” with the others, therefore it doesn’t make a difference to me, if it was with males or females. It’s the passion that counts.

Expertly put! Regarding your style (which we love) it truly seems to sink its teeth quite deeply into American culture, which is cool. Does this mean that you and Operator Emz connected more than the others?

Actually you’re right, style-wise Emz and I really are more alike than I am with the other collectors. Talking about our favorite basketball models, made us click easily. But I am a total sucker for catalogs, which made a great connection to Ralf and I am also working in the visual media, organizing sneaker exhibitions and writing about sneakers, which Robert and I have in common. So there was an overlapping interest with all of the collectors, which made it a great group for the project.

Right, and you all have that in common, the desire to collect and accumulate cool shoes. As for shoes and collecting, how many adidas shoes do you think you have currently? How many of them do you (or can you even) wear? What percentage of them are vintage pairs?

That’s a hard question to answer, since I don’t even know the exact number of shoes I own altogether. I would say vintage makes up 45% of my adidas collection. Since most of the models I favor can still be worn (if you don’t mind ‘snowy’ socks) I wear 85% of them.

That’s brave indeed, and quite different than the behavior and collections of some of the other brand enthusiasts involved. As a photographer do you find that this profession brings you closer to the brands and thus organically enables your collection to grow more easily? Do you find you’re more on the ‘inside’ when it comes to new releases, or befriending shops, or talking to designers as they work on collabs?

I work with most of my favorite brands as a freelance photographer, but also for all types of other projects like exhibitions, conventions, booklets, and more. The same goes for shops here in Berlin. I have worked for or with most local sneaker stores, so I am kind of on the inside. This of course strengthens my relationship to the brands and sometimes also helps me out as a collector. But after dedicating money, time, and work to my favorite brands for over fifteen years, it’s a give and take. There’s always a benefit for both sides.

True. That sort of brings it around full circle to this opportunity you’ve experienced with adidas now. And more to the point of your shoe, we love the fact that you knew not only the model but even the colorway of what you would do right away. So when it comes to the Rivalry Hi, since you mention your first adidas memory is really of a Forum, why this Ewing shoe? What about it is so attention grabbing or emotional for you?

At the time of its release the Forum was the most expensive adidas sneaker. Very technical and heavy. So was the Conductor. I mentioned the Forum, because it stands for all the basketball shoes from the ’80s that I was so impressed by. I also love other models from that time, like Status 1 Hi, El Dorado, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, or Centennial. Out of all the models from back then, the Rivalry was one that had not been retroed since 1986. And when I decided for the model, I did not know that adidas was going to rerelease them in 2013 anyways.

Rereleased already or not, thanks to you it’s coming back in true OG form! So, tell us, what variations of the OG Rivalry’s, Ewing’s, and Conductors do you own (and wear)? What about new releases, there have been tons of Rivalry’s just this year, which ones did you pick up? Which ones were your favorites?

I think this would be too much to enumerate here. Actually I did not buy so many Rivalry’s from this year’s retros. I am all about OG colorways, so I only picked up the white on black Rivalry Hi, black NY Rivalry Lo, NY Knicks Rivalry Lo, and the black Mastermind Rivalry Hi. I don’t care too much for the ‘re-interpretations’ of a classic, when it’s too far away from the original.

That makes a lot of sense for someone as nostalgic as you are. What about your own variations on the OG design, tell us a bit about that, it seems you added some snakeskin effect to the side stripes and the toe box, was this ever included in an OG version or something you’ve added yourself for flare?

I added this as an extra. I wanted to create a deluxe version of my favorite OG color way – grey on white. The snakeskin was supposed to be the highlight material for this basic design.

It came out so clean too! Beyond materials it appears your details have really left the shoe alone for the most part, but we really dig the Sneakerqueen version of the Ewing icon. And the sockliner is very cool, appearing to pay tribute to the other collectors as well, and if we’re not mistaken no other collector did this, did they? What was the thinking behind that?

Just like I instantly had a clear vision of what I wanted my Rivalry to look like, I also wanted to pay tribute to the original with little details. I wanted to have the box paper printed like the original box paper from that collection, but as all shoes got plain white wrapping, I decided to use the print on the insoles instead. Here I also wanted to keep it as close to the original as possible, therefore the blue-purple print and the hand drawn designs. I included the other shoes, because after all my shoe is part of a collection, too. I loved those little details on shoes from the ’80s and ’90s. Whether it’s an accessory like laces and another merchandising device or a special design on the box, paper, or the labels. You’d always get a nice little extra with a special product.

You’ve certainly continued that tradition in your shoe as well, Julia. So, where to next for you? Can you imagine doing more design work and moving sideways a bit from your photography, or is this more of a one time thing that you’ve done for the experience and because it’s adidas?

As long as a brand is interested in my knowledge and opinions, I will be happy to collaborate. I have built a strong relationship with adidas over the past few years, which I very much appreciate and enjoy, so I don’t think it will be the last time we’ll work together. Of course I would love to do more sneaker designs, I don’t see life in terms of either-or and I love interdisciplinary projects. After all, I combined my love for sneaker with my vocation as a freelance photographer quite well so far. Both passions can benefit from each other.

You have, you definitely have. Well, once again, a huge congratulations goes out to you from all of us here at eatmoreshoes and we’d like to thank you as well for taking the time to talk with us about your latest and greatest. We’ll keep our eyes peeled for you at No74′s weekend release, eager to see what sort of style you match up with your newly dropped pair.

written by Dylan Cromwell

photography by errol