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This effort includes supporting barrier-breaking athletes, from rebel runner Joan Benoit Samuelson (the first woman to claim marathon gold) to record-setting tennis great Serena Williams (owner of 23 major titles). Countless other star athletes have also reached the pinnacle of their sport with Nike — on the basketball court, the track, the football pitch and beyond — and each helps to progress opportunities for women in sport.

Nike also encourages the progress of professional and everyday athletes through innovation. Women’s-specific design solutions have ranged from a consistent offering of footwear to recent developments that aim to broaden women’s access to sport, such as the Nike Pro Hijab and plus-sizing for athletic apparel.

One thing that connects all women in sport is sneakers. As a performance tool and lifestyle accessory, the sneaker is a transcendent symbol of athletic and stylistic identity. Certain styles can also reveal the wearer’s soul by expressing their ethos and beliefs — especially when these intertwine with sustainable builds and materials.

All three of these elements — athletes, innovation and product — come together in 2018 as Nike initiates four new ways of thinking about sneakers for women. Here’s how this approach is beginning to shape up.


Unisex sizing on select classic Jordan styles and collaborative collections such as Virgil Abloh x Nike The TENrecognizes the universality of sneaker culture and reduces the frustration of missing out due to size unavailability. In the fall, expanded sizes will extend to iconic silos, including the Nike Air Force 1 and Air Max lines, providing ever-increasing options to collect, rock or stock.


A curated selection of sneakers, inclusive of expanded sizes, innovative performance styles and iconic collaborations, presents a holistic view that forms the backbone of Nike Unlaced, NIKE, Inc.’s new sneaker destination for women.

Nike Unlaced is a global digital and retail concept that follows a Nike dot-com evolution in Europe, which provided distinction for women through product styling and local curators. (In North America, the Nike x Nordstrom sneaker boutique retail and digital experience, co-created with Olivia Kim, also served as a precursor.) Local Nike Unlaced product curations by influential creatives and stylists from New York, Paris, London, Shanghai and more are coming soon.


From personalized styling to VIP member experiences (including same-day delivery and exclusive hours), these services offered by Nike Unlaced are designed to increase connectivity and access to sneakers for women. For example, members will have the opportunity to arrange one-on-one appointments with guest stylists and take their prized selections home in specialized packaging.


As sneakers transcended sport and initiated street-style trends, collaboration became an integral component of sneaker culture, blossoming into a symbiotic relationship between brands and external creative communities.

That community has been predominantly male. However, in pushing new female voices, Nike is challenging the sneaker status quo.

In recent years, this has been propelled by curator-led retail partnerships (for example, the aforementioned Kim and Nordstrom boutique). Creative endeavors with A.L.C.’s Andrea Lieberman and the International Girls Crew on the iconic Nike Cortez have also given new scope to sneaker collaborations; another highlight is the recent The 1 Reimagined project, Nike’s first collection of footwear designed entirely by a 14-strong female design collective.

These projects define the future state of footwear for women, where more curation and collaboration can be expected, but also an increase in female representation is poised to manifest new ideas not just for women but all sneaker enthusiasts.

From Sneakerheads to Art Collectors

From Sneakerheads to Art Collectors

It was a damp Tuesday evening in London, but they waited down the block and around the corner to get in, mostly young men, mostly in sneakers, at least one with a Supreme bag.

It wasn’t a so-called product drop. It was an opening at the Gagosian Gallery. “We have never had a lineup around the block to get into an exhibition,” said Nick Simunovic, the director at Gagosian Hong Kong.

Mr. Murakami made a smiling flower character; Mr. Abloh built a greenhouse around it. Lauren Fleishman for The New York Times

The occasion was the opening of “Future History,” a collaborative exhibition by Virgil Abloh, the American designer behind Off-White, and Takashi Murakami, the Japanese fine artist whose menagerie of adorable cartoon monsters have become pop totems (and the guest stars on a best-selling line of Louis Vuitton accessories).

Each man is a hero of the “hypebeast” community, and they came together last year at ComplexCon, the annual convention at which hypebeasts swarm. Mr. Abloh and Mr. Murakami had set up a silk-screen station to create T-shirts together and were mobbed.

“I never knew sneakerheads,” Mr. Murakami said of his first time at ComplexCon. “I said, ‘What is happening?’ I am walking around this convention, and everyone knows my face.” He imitated the fanboys he encountered in a gasp: “‘Oh my God, Takashi Murakami, oh my God, oh my God!’” Then he giggled in disbelief: “What?

The collaborators made a limited-edition T-shirt for the exhibition. Flo Kohl

ComplexCon had led here to Gagosian, the gallery that represents Mr. Murakami, for which, over the course of about two and a half months, he and Mr. Abloh collaborated on paintings and sculptures. Mr. Murakami made a large sculpture of one of his smiling flower characters; Mr. Abloh built a greenhouse around it. Mr. Abloh requested a screen print of an image from a 17th-century self-portrait by Gian Lorenzo Bernini; Mr. Murakami screened the mouselike ears of his character Mr. DOB on top.

“Truth be told, I don’t go into these things knowing if they’ll work,” Mr. Abloh said.

The day before, Mr. Abloh, in T-shirt and camouflage pants, and Mr. Murakami, in baggy sweats and Off-White Nikes, had installed the show and discussed their working process.

“My position is, he’s the master, I’m the labor,” Mr. Murakami said. They had come together each with their own thoughts and bounced them off each other, and developed ideas quickly.

“From the idea to do the show to what some of these first pieces would be was, maybe, two minutes,” Mr. Abloh said. Both men’s icons are instantly recognizable in each piece — Mr. Abloh’s ever-present air quotes, Mr. Murakami’s characters — but here they’re presented as co-signed artworks, even if Mr. Abloh’s usual media are clothes and shoes.

“When I’m designing a shoe, I’m employing ideas from art, everything I’ve seen, and it’s manifesting itself in a shoe,” he said. “Why not cement them in serious art pieces? That’s what these four walls do, more than a retail store.” He paused at a sculpture of a Murakami character rising off a base made from an Off-White logo mark. “I could see this in a retail space,” he said. “I could also see it in a home of a billionaire.”

It could well end up in one. Even before the exhibition’s opening, half of the pieces had been sold. “The feedback and results have been incredible,” said Mr. Simunovic, the gallery’s liaison to Mr. Murakami. “We sold a painting today, for example, to a 21-year-old who had never worked with the gallery before.” The gallery does not disclose artwork pricing.

A screen print of an image from a 17th-century self-portrait by Gian Lorenzo Bernini from the Abloh and Murakami collaboration. Lauren Fleishman for The New York Times

For Mr. Abloh, part of the project’s appeal was bringing his dedicated fan base into contact with the new horizons of the art world. In 2019, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago will stage the first museum retrospective of his work. “It’s generational,” he said. “I was born in 1980. I always thought that us buying a rare Supreme shirt is like buying a print for a previous generation.”

Mr. Abloh and Mr. Murakami did design an edition of 400 T-shirts to be sold on the Gagosian website, which will be finished by hand as an entry-level offering; they quickly sold out. But none were for sale the night of the opening, and the lines formed anyway. (Many of those waiting were hoping that the artists would sign their sneakers and shuffled around the gallery, once they were finally let in, in socks.)

Mr. Murakami, who between the installation and the opening had traded his hygienic face mask (he had a slight cold) for one fashioned out of a Nike sneaker, one of Mr. Abloh’s signature zip ties and a bit of camouflage print from his Louis Vuitton collaboration, seemed delighted. He sneaked out of the gallery to take selfies with those waiting. (“How’s the population in London of sneakerheads?” he had wondered in all seriousness the day before. “I really want to welcome the new audience.”)

“The world moves as fast as Instagram scrolls,” Mr. Abloh said. “What excites me more is the physical. I think that will be rewarding. That’s my barometer: Is the piece done? Is it good enough? Is it worthy of someone’s time?”

Outside, they were still waiting. Even Mr. Martin, the marine. “I’m not going to get in,” he said, with admirable even temper. There was over an hour to go. Luckily, the exhibition remains up through April 7.

Born in Munich, grown up in Seoul and ready to party in Berlin

Born in Munich, grown up in Seoul and ready to party in Berlin

Luxury travel goods manufacturer MCM finds a new Seoul in Berlin.

Everybody is speaking about millenials and Generation Z and it seems that they are responsible for the death of mainstream media with their very niche interests. At Achtung Mode we are highly specialized in fashion content only but more and more the luxury brands we work with have to execute crossover ideas often in conjunction with the art world to have reach. MCM is a leader when it comes to speaking to the fickle millennial audience. And here is why.

Oh boy, all the smart marketing moves they have to come up with to play favor with this audience. They are a shopaholic generation of travelers whose itineraries make those of diplomats pale in comparison and they only want the coolest. They are all over the place and all over the planet and know everything. But as every nomad, they like to belong to a tribe.

MCM is a leader when it comes to speaking to the fickle millennial audience.

If you want to have them buy your product and stay loyal you must make them believe in your roots and heritage and always keep them entertained. Sounds complicated, yes, and it is.

Still MCM, which is considered a hip brand with millenials, has taken a big step a few weeks ago. The brand was born in Munich and is doing well all over Asia for its German craftsmanship and savoir-faire reputation. But to stay on the edge, MCM, which is focusing on growth in Europe and Germany at the moment, has decided to declare Berlin as its new German creative hub with global influence. Munich is in the history books but Berlin and its Bauhaus tradition and now bourgeoning art and club scene is what makes the brand tick. Also, Made in Italy will start playing a bigger role for the brand.

To underline this new direction, MCM’s Sung-Joo Kim invited an eclectic group of international journalists and tastemakers to a few days in Berlin under the moniker Viva MCM, Viva Berlin. Events where kicked off at the Store at Soho House Berlin. The Store has slowly but surely established itself as one of Berlin’s best retail destinations next to the Corner and Andreas Murkudis and the Voo Store with its fine edit of top brands. Korean DJ Peggy Gou played and Berlin DJ trio Fjaak unveiled a USB pocket for MCM with tracks for traveling.

A new collaboration with Johann Koenig Souvenir and MCM which will premier at Art Basel Miami was unveiled.

MCM also organized a tasting menu at Tim Raue, Berlin’s best chef with Asian leanings and highlight was an evening at St. Agnes the Johann Koenig art gallery where Norbert Bisky explained his current exhibition to the audience. Needless to say, the space in the Brutalist church is amazing and other top artists like Anselm Reyle who shows in the same gallery attended. Also, a new collaboration with Johann Koenig Souvenir and MCM which will premier at Art Basel Miami was unveiled. On display was an exclusive preview of the KS x MCM collection of limited MCM editions curated by Koenig Souvenir, a label for unique objects of art founded by Johann Koenig and David Mallon: “For the Koenig Souvenir x MCM Travel Collection, we were inspired by the airport as a place of transition – not only for people, but also for art works traveling around the globe. We wanted a collection that recalls this modern way of travel and shipping, but also connects with art in its production process. The collection will be issued as a limited art edition of six travel items playing on the traditional MCM design,” says Mallon. The collaboration will launch at Art Basel Miami Beach this December.

So if you want to stay in with millennial, have roots, show them and make your branches grow.

New Values

New Values


What is a brand?

A brand is a promise

It is not only a logo or brand name.

Rather they are the visual cues to trigger that locus of emotions that the brand promises you.

The brand promise are the emotional feelings and cravings that are triggered when you think of the brand.

You must keep your brand promise at every touchpoint you have with your customers.

If you want to create a brand, start by thinking of your brand promise. What experience do you want your customers to have when they encounter the brand.

Four Keys to Successful Brands:

1. Authentic.

It must be truly tied to what you are as a company, meaning your values and core purpose.

2. Relevant.

Your promise must be relevant to consumers and you must be perceived as to deliver better than the competition.

3. Consistency

You must keep your brand promise consistent across every touchpoint you have with consumers.

4. Commitment

You must have total commitment to keep the brand promise.

Everybody in the company needs to live the brand, support it and continue to invest in it.

What experience do you want your customers when they encounter your brand?

Brand benefits

Builds customer loyalty

Increases value

Allows higher prices

Builds market share

Easier launch of new products

Lower employee turnover

Helps in talent recruitment

Creates esteem

Difficult Branding Situations

New market categories with few customers

Highly fragmented industries

Understanding the branding process

1. Define the brand

Define the promise and the key values behind it.

Think of the values as the DNA of the brand.

Define the brand drivers, brand drivers define how the core values will be manifested into the marketing mix or key business processes the support the brand. Drivers translate the values into action.

2. Position the brand.

At this step we are making the link between the products value preposition and the brand promise

Shape how the customers think about the brand.

3. Express the brand.

Create an identity.

We create name and logo to get easy recognition.

4. Build awareness of the brand.

Communicate the brand internally and externally.

Employees have a critical role in delivering the brand promise.

Communicate continuously and consistently or the brand loses its value.

The value of the brand is called brand equity.

Keep an eye on the brand performance. Is it living up to the promise.

5.Measure the Brand

You want to measure the value of the brand or what is called the brand equity. It’s what you accrue when you develop, promote and deliver an authentic brand promise.


Identify the values of the brand

A brand is a promise, underneath the promise is a supporting set of values.

Brand values are the key behaviors or virtues or the brand.

That need to be expressed consistently day in and out.

These values are the essence or the team of the brand.

Determining the brand values starts by understanding the overall marketing strategy of you business.

What kinds of products and services do you offer? And, who are your competitors.

What are the trends and opportunities in your market?

Who are your customers?

What is your overall value proposition in the market place.

Have a solid marketing strategy before you build a solid branding strategy.

What is the belief system underneath your brands. Is it linked to your marketing strategy?

Is it clear what your brand stands for now, and what it wants to be in the future.

Brand Drivers

Detailed and descriptive aspects of the brand.

Functional or emotional benefits of the brand. Self expressive benefits, what is the customer saying about themselves when they consume the brand.

How to create brand Drivers:

Make an exhaustive list of phrases or sentences about the brand that stretches the brand purpose.

Put them in categories:

Functional benefits

The basic job that the product does.

Emotional benefits

How does the product make the customer feel.

Economic Benefits

How a product saves time and money.

Self-expressive benefits

How a product makes us appear to others.

Or benefits to society or the environment.

Brand drivers put more meaning into the brand, they communicate what your brand is all about.


You create a brand with its core promise and list of associations. Then you attach something to that promise like a product or a company name.

By attaching the product to the brand your customers associate it with the brand.

Again, branding is not slapping a name on the product.

What kind of things can I attach to the brand?

A brand is a locus of emotions.

It’s all the emotions inside that are triggered by a brand that define it.

Designing your brand architecture

1. Create a house of brands

Customers don’t know the company only brand.


2. Create a branded house.

A master brand has under the umbrella many products.

3. Blended House Example

Strong Master Brand with sub brands.

Identifying the brand personality

Brand Persona

A set of human like characteristics describing someone who keeps a brand’s promise.

Personality helps brands maintain loyal customers.

“Dimensions of Brand Personality. by Dr. Jennifer Aaker

5 Main Dimensions of Brand Personality:


Down to earth, honest, genuine and friendly.-

 (Warm, happy, cheerful and caring.)





Authentic brands are those that reflect the characteristics of the people who deliver value to the market place.


Identifying your customers


Dividing a market of potential customers into groupings.

Demographic Segmentation

Grouping customers by physical characteristics (gender, age, height, weight, and/ or hair color.

Geographic Segmentation

Grouping people by where they are or where they live.

Behavioral Segmentation

Grouping customers by things they do, or how they behave, such as purchase behavior, lifestyles and the ways they use product.

Attitudinal  Segmentation

Grouping customers by how they think.

Understanding your customers beliefs

What do you promise?

When do you promise it?

When people buy product’s and services they are buying a collection of benefits.

Functional Benefits

Economic Benefits

Emotional Benefits

Self Esteem / Status

Purchasing Steps

1. Need Recognition

2. Information Search

3. Evaluation of Alternatives

4. Purchase

5. Post Purchase Behavior

This is when customers form opinions about your brands and share their experiences with other customers.

Developing your brand promise:

The value proposition

A single-minded claim made to change a customer’s mind and cause them to do something

The brand promise is your overall value proposition.

It’s a broad, definitive statement of the bundle of benefits to customers by the brand.

Brand Positioning = Long Term, Strategic

Value Proposition = Short Term, Tactical

The connection between brand strategy and marketing strategy.

Value propositions are designed around the brand drivers as RTBs.

Reasons to believe the overall brand strategy.

What features and benefits of your products and services are you emphasizing in your market strategy?

Then look at  your brand drivers to find the ones that connect best to those benefits.

Four Expressing the Brand Identity

Creating a name, a visual look, and feel for the brand,

and a total customer experience for the target audience for when they encounter the brand.

The name you select for your brand should

1. Reflect value and purpose

2. Create association with the brand persona

3. Be easy to say

4. Be unique and memorable

Select a name then communicate the name and its associated values and purpose, so that people start to make a connection.

Creating the brand’s look and feel

Creating the logo

The designer needs to know:

The brand values

The core promise

The brand drivers

The persona and the brand name

Logo Lockups

Different logo variations used for various placements and usage

Choosing a Color Palette

Assign colors to the logo

Identify complementary colors

Choosing a Typographic Treatment

Identify how to handle special cases

Image Guidelines

Photography of Illustration.

BW vs Color

Defining a Consistent Tone

Outline specific language and words

Decide if tone should be more formal or more conversational.

Create the Brand Promise Touch Tones

1. Need recognition

2. Information search

3. Evaluation of Alternatives

4. Purchase

5. Post-purchase behavior phase

The Customer Experience

Define customer touch points

Select drivers to emphasize

Five Communicating the Brand internally

1. Train your team

2. Reinforce constantly

Match the training to the employee

Employees Need to Know

1. Brand promise

2. Connection to values

3. Drivers

4. Brand Identity

5. Ways to think, feel and act

Brand Champions +

Brand Ambassadors

Influential Company Employees who represent what the company stands for.

Brand Book Components

Overview of brand values, core promise, drivers and persona.

Logo specifications and examples

Logo Lockups

Color Palette

Font Styles


Image and photography guidelines

Writing Style

Tone of Voice

Brand Book Guidelines

Brochure guidelines

Specifications for signage and outdoor advertising

Design layouts for print and Web Based projects

Store Design

Social media guidelines

Letterhead and business card design

Brand Book Training Resource

Historical Stories

Customer Stories

Brand Goals

Watch out for the Gap between Product Performance and the Brand

Product not delivering promised Benefits

Your product is maybe

Underfeatured or


1. Make a list of all features in your product and service

2. Write down the main benefits the feature delivers


Choosing Communication Channels

Why do you wanna communicate?

Are you telling the market your overall strategic brand positioning, the core brand promise? Or are you building tactical awareness around some new feature of benefit of the product?

Who is your target audience?

What are you communicating?

Expressing the brand in digital and social channels

Using Digital Channels

Ensure consistent look and feel

Use the same voice

Define who can post and who can’t

Specify the role of each site

Expressing the brand through packaging

Packaging is the first physical encounter with the brand and the last and maybe the most critical, seconds before the customer is going to pay.

Identify the Functional Role

Choose messaging

Provide guidance on the design

Creating Branded Spaces and Environments

Choose a location

Decide on the role of the space

Choose components which communicate the brand drivers


Measuring the Brand

What is the basic awareness of the brand?

How well does the audience understand your brand?

How much loyalty is the brand building

Customer Loyalty Changes

Losing relevance

Lacking differentiation

Lacking Consistency

Internal Factors to Measure

Do employees:

Fully understand your brand

Understand target audience, customer insights and drivers.

Have a commitment to the brand?

Protect the brand?

Managing Brand Equity

Internal Change Examples


Acquisition/ Merger


Financial Downturn

External Change Examples

New Competitors

New Regulations

Legal Actions

Bad Publicity

Consumer Trends Change

Coping with Change

Identify a Brand Stewart who

manages Brand Compliance

Assign a Brand Champion

CEO or senior officer

Assign a brand champion to represent the company throughout the organization

Choose one from each cross-functional department

Review brand performance

Recommend ways to improve

Create a brand team

Reinforce branding

Energize the company



Brand Management



Create a Development Plan

Study the classic and new academic research on branding

Be a lifelong learner

What are other companies doing

New Technology

New trends

Join the Branding Community

Practice your Craft

Have a strong Ethical Base

Get In Line

Get In Line

The Cult of the Line and Weekly Drops.

Shoppers standing in line to get into a Supreme store in Tokyo. For many, the lure is as often the wait as the wares. Andrew Faulk for The New York Times

Theolus Jackson slouched against the stanchion separating him from the entrance of Supreme, the streetwear emporium on Lafayette Street in SoHo. He had registered on the company’s website to pick up a ticket assuring him a spot near the head of a line that by 10 a.m. that day spooled around the corner toward Broadway.

Wearing loose trousers, a football jersey and earbuds, he bided his time. “Most of the time I have my music, so I’m not bothered,” Mr. Jackson said. “I come every week — I like the vibe — and I just chill.”

The ostensible draw for Mr. Jackson and his comrades on that balmy June morning, the so-called drop prompting a couple of hundred fashion die-hards to snap open their wallets, was a jacket ($298) and companion shirt ($158), stamped with the image of a Richard Prince-inspired cowpoke, which sold out within moments after 11, when Supreme opened its doors.

Did it matter? Not much. Though upmarket streetwear — hoodies, sneakers, skateboards, ball caps, sanitation-worker boiler suits — is the ostensible lure for these hunter-gatherers, the wares are just part of the draw.

“These kids don’t come to go into the store,” said Jeff Carvalho, the executive editor of Highsnobiety, a content-and-commerce website and magazine focused on high-end streetwear. “They want to be in the line.” Casting an appraising eye on the restive Thursday morning scene, he drove home the point.

“The line is the new community,” Mr. Carvalho said. “When 200 to 300 kids are lining up outside of a store, it’s because they want to be part of something.”

Mr. Carvalho and Jian DeLeon, Highsnobiety’s editorial director, make it their business to monitor the weekly drops at emporiums like Supreme, Nike Lab and Palace, the London-based skate-fashion store with a new outpost in New York.

On this day, they had offered themselves as field guides to what promised be a highly engaging hybrid of tribal rite and street theater, a latter-day alterative to the once-ubiquitous bands of adolescents raucously swarming malls.

“Come get your number — hurry before they pass you over,” a gangly guy in a tank top yelled to a companion. “You only have a certain amount of grace period.”

Like other fans of the streetwear brand, Kenta Kashiuagi shows off his reward in Tokyo: a new Supreme T-shirt. Andrew Faulk for The New York Times

His shouts and those of companions volleying from one end of the street to the other pricked up the ears of hypervigilant store personnel ready to pounce on infractions.

Glancing at them furtively, one petitioner stammered: “I can’t talk to you. I’m going to get thrown off the line.”

But overbearing security and a building sense of pressure did not seem to ruffle the mood. For many of these strivers, the chance to swap insider intelligence and bask in camaraderie was, after all, the point.

“Those things make the kids more agreeable to doing something that on surface you think is a sort of absurd proposition,” said Noah Callahan-Bever, the editor of Complex, an online youth-culture magazine that has chronicled the evolution of the line phenomenon in a series of videos.

Absurd, for sure, when a “luxury” recliner can be reserved at the multiplex on an app like Fandango, and a puffer coat from Vetements summoned at a click at, rendering the queue all but obsolete.

Jay Hines, a fashion stylist, talking to shoppers outside Supreme’s London location. Lauren Fleishman for The New York Times

Yet the line persists, a global trend stretching these days from Tokyo to Tucson and Berlin to the Bronx. Its members, millennials and their younger Gen Z kin, share a mind-set, making common cause of a yen for authenticity. What’s more, they defy facile stereotyping.

“One time I saw a guy with a three-piece suit,” Mr. DeLeon said. “He was wearing immaculate Moscot tortoiseshell glasses. He told me, ‘I’m a lawyer meeting with a client, but I want first to get a sweatshirt here.’”

A mere half-dozen years ago, a shared lust for skateboard and locker-room gear sustained the community. “A limited-edition sneaker was so rare that when two people were wearing it, you knew something connected them — certain music, certain art, certain fashion,” said David Fischer, Highsnobiety’s Berlin-based chief executive. But time, as he noted, wrought changes.

Today, the queue is partly a resellers’ market: energetic young entrepreneurs snapping up wares in multiples, then flipping them at soaring markups on eBay or selling them for pocket change to finance their own buys. On this day, the spirit of commerce was lively on Lafayette Street, with vans lining the far side of the block, the trunks popped to display boxes and bags packed with limited-edition inventory from Nike, Supreme and other vendors — a lure for passers-by.

“Reselling, it’s an easy way to make money,” said a tank-top-garbed youth who goes by the street name Young Sin. “I do this every Thursday. You can’t get locked up for it.” Young Sin, Y S to his friends, planned to pick up a cap for himself and offer additional, marked-up items to all comers.

“I like Supreme,” he said, shrugging, “but they could be Old Navy as long as it helps pay my rent.”

For many others, though, the wait itself is sufficient reward. Some could have taken a page from Andy Warhol, who observed in his loosely structured 1975 memoir, “The Philosophy of Andy Warhol,” that lining up for movie tickets offered distinct pleasures. “The possibility of never getting in is exciting,” Warhol mused. “But after that, waiting to get in is the most exciting.”

Traveling in packs has additional perks. “The death of the shopping center has created this void in kids’ lives,” Mr. Callahan-Bever said. “It’s being filled in part by this society of kids, some known to each other only from the internet, all of them into this niche product that acts as a social identifier. For them, standing in line for a T-shirt or baseball cap is a way of telling the world that you know about something that not everyone is hip to.”

Professed connoisseurs, plenty of these queuers like the kick of the chase. “You can’t find this stuff at Bloomingdale’s or Macy’s,” said a 40-something, suede-clad man at Supreme, too press-shy to provide his name. “I like the exclusiveness of people always seeing me and saying, ‘Wow.’ It’s kind of like being a movie star.”

As David Andrews noted playfully in his 2015 pop culture rumination, “Why Does the Other Line Always Move Faster?”: “I can attest to the sense of togetherness that sometimes develops with the strangers around you in line.”

Shoppers standing in line along Lafayette Street to get into Supreme’s SoHo store. Jackie Molloy for The New York Times

“We become a little band of survivors, with a grim gallows humor to match,” Mr. Andrews wrote. “We’re all in this together.”

Will Gamble, a student at the University of Exeter, is a regular at Supreme’s weekly drops in London. “The line,” he said, “is quite a sociable thing. I’ve made friends purely from going to Supreme every week and seeing what’s going on.”

Shared interests with his queuing companions vary from gallery hopping to sports to music. “We’re big fans of Radiohead, and we like a bit of art,” said Mr. Gamble, the preening owner of a “pill shirt,” a Supreme item influenced by a signature artwork by Damien Hirst.

“I meet up with one of my friends,” he said. “We wait, we take photos — it’s almost the whole day.”

What, after all, is the point of the wait if you can’t share? As Mr. Fischer, at 38 an old hand in this unlikely ritual, views it, “Standing in line and finally getting the product, that’s only one exciting part of the cycle.”

The peak experience: going social with your trophy.

“Once you have it,” he said, “you get to snap it a couple of times on Instagram.”

And after? “It’s on to the next thing,” he said.

Ruth La Ferla, The New York Times

“I am a Foreigner”

“I am a Foreigner”


It was a Chanel Haute Couture collection that was as finely engineered by Karl Lagerfeld and the skilled petites mains of the house’s legendary workrooms as the giant model of the Eiffel Tower that rose above the sand-and-gravel runway into a dry ice–misted sky in the highest reaches of the dome of the Grand Palais.
“I’m feeling very out of it,” confided a jet-lagged Katy Perry. “I wasn’t sure if they’d chopped down the Eiffel Tower for Karl!”
The city of Paris may not have gone that far, but after the show, the audience remained seated as Anne Hidalgo, the city’s dynamic mayor, did the next best thing and presented Karl with its highest honor, the Médaille Grand Vermeil de la Ville.
“To say that I was impressed is too weak a word,” said Hidalgo in her stirring presentation. “Your imagination is boundless, and your ability to transport us into a different universe. You are a universal person,” she added, “but you are also someone who makes Paris more beautiful and more creative. You are a Parisian.”
“I am a foreigner,” said Karl, pointedly, “and strangers see things through different eyes, with a detachment. Vive la France!” he added, “and above all, Vive Paris!”