Adidas Yeezy is a fashion collaboration between the German sportswear brand Adidas and American designer Kanye West.
The collaboration has become notable for its sneakers, and the Yeezy Boost sneaker line has been considered one of the most influential sneaker brands in the world. While mostly known for its sneakers, the collaboration also produced shirts, jackets, track pants, socks, and women’s shoes.
Kanye West originally designed a shoe for Adidas in 2006, but it was never released. The first brand to officially collaborate with Kanye West was Bape. Together, West and Bape released a pair of Bapesta “College Dropout” shoes, which are now quite rare and garner high resell prices.
He has also designed shoes for Louis Vuitton and Giuseppe Zanotti, and (most notably) Nike. His collaboration with Nike lasted for five years and led to the release of a total of three (two silhouettes, Yeezy 1 and the Yeezy 2) sneaker styles. In 2013, after the release of the “Red October” Air Yeezy 2s, Kanye West officially left Nike. Although West described this break as “heartbreaking”, he claimed that Nike would not pay him royalties for his shoe designs, instead offering to pay some of the proceeds to a charity of West’s choice.
This ultimately led West to reach out to Adidas. Adidas agreed to give him royalties, and West described the CEO of Adidas as “someone who allowed him to build something”. In February 2015, a year and three months after the confirmation of the Adidas and Kanye West collaboration, the collaboration officially debuted. “Yeezy Season 1” was highly anticipated and celebrities such as Rihanna, Diddy, and Kim Kardashian were at the showing. “Yeezy Season 2” and “Yeezy Season 3” also saw notable amounts of success upon their releases. “Yeezy Season 1” was released on October 29th, 2015, and was the first apparel collection to release from this collaboration.
This collection was noted for its stripped-down, ready-to-wear style, which drew on military clothing and flesh-toned colors. The prices ranged from $600 for sweatpants to $3,000 for jackets. Although the footwear sold out quickly, the apparel collection did not. West revealed in a 2018 interview that he was in talks with Louis Vuitton for a $30 million apparel deal. The deal was not approved by the LVMH board and West was left with no clothing partners. After the “Yeezy Season 1” show.
Adidas announced they would no longer be a part of Yeezy apparel, instead focusing on the footwear collection with West. With Yeezy Season 6, Adidas and West re-introduced several articles of clothing with Adidas branding As of December 2017, a total of 19 colourways and 6 designs have been released between the Adidas and Yeezy collaboration. Through a combination of factors including popularization by celebrities, Adidas Yeezy sneakers have come to be extremely influential and highly coveted. Most of the shoes utilize Adidas’s Boost material, noted for being an extremely comfortable material for the wearer’s feet.
On June 27, 2015, the second shoe from the collaboration, the Yeezy Boost 350 was made available through a worldwide release. The shoe was first released in a white and grey “Turtle Dove” colour scheme. On August 22, 2015, an all-black version of the Yeezy Boost 350 released, known as the “Pirate Black.” An olivine variant, the “Moonrock,” was released exclusively to stores who were vendors for the Yeezy Season 1 clothing line. The fourth and final version of Season 1’s 350 Boost was the “Oxford Tan,” which featured a light-brown color scheme. In early 2016, a revised version of the Pirate Black colourway was released. Revisions included additional support and padding to the heel.
However, both iterations are relatively identical in appearance. All variants of the shoe retailed for $200 On August 27, 2016, the Yeezy Boost 350 re-released in infant sizes. The shoe was released in the “Turtle Dove” and “Pirate Black” colour scheme. There have been no further releases or restocks of the sneaker, but the style was later reimagined and reintroduced with the “Yeezy Boost 350 V2”.