As early as 8:00 am, a huge line of sneakerheads snaked around the Flushing Avenue entrance to Brooklyn Navy Yards. The event, HYPEFEST, was a two-day extravaganza held in a geofenced area where you could only use their app within the walls to purchase exclusive items.
The biggest buzz circled around the RIMOWA collaboration with Virgil Abloh and Off-White™. The clear carry-on sized luggage, priced at $1,500, was #instaworthy for the thousands of people who attended.
But it was Adidas Originals' ambitious experiential activation of its "Never Made" campaign that made the biggest impression. Retro NYC block was replicated and invited attendees to explore inside. Walk to a dry cleaner or pass through a chain link fence to a courtyard area complete with public payphones and fire hydrants all swathed in their ubiquitous blue.
The retro city block theme paid homage to the company with the three-striped iconic silhouettes from the brand's history. Fans that were lucky enough to score a ticket to Hypefest and get inside the geofence had first access to purchase one of the eight designed sneakers that combined the old and the new. Of course, a customization shop provided an opportunity to add your mark on t-shirts and totes.
The event was organized by Hypebeast, the leading online destination for men's contemporary streetwear and sneakers and curated by ura-Harajuku mayor, Hiroshi Fujiwara, and Sarah Andelman, former creative director of famed Collette.
Other brands like Aape, Girls Don't Cry, and Puma were all in attendance. THUNDERBOLT PROJECT BY ◾️◾️◾️◾️◾️ & POKÉMON gathered a security-necessary crowd intent on copping the collection, as well as securing their free Level 25 exclusive bag and stickers. Palm Angeles x Moncler covered a Lamborghini in hundred-dollar bills in their Make it Rain booth. MCM had monogrammed teddy bears and a yacht at the event, while Cherry, a brand out of Los Angeles, took its inspiration for its booth from Hustler and pornographic magazines.
A host of celebrities and influencers were there both as guests and panelists for HYPETALKS, including Action Bronson; Jonah Hill; Gucci Mane; sneaker reviewer, Brad Hall; Aleali May; Matthew Williams of ALYX, John Elliott, Lauren Tsai, UniqueHype‘s OG MA, Errolson Hugh, Nigel Sylvester; and Josh Luber. Living icon Jaden Smith even stopped by to unveil his “Forces of Nature” collaboration with G-STAR RAW.
Article by Becky Yee. Photos shot on YI Digital Camera.