Here at ARKK, we’re always asking the question, “what if?” What if we created our own camo design, pixel by pixel? What if we added a gum outsole? And, for our Pre Fall ‘18 collection, one question we asked was, “what if we made a Raven that was somehow distinctly feminine but also bold, texture-rich, and unlike any other sneaker out there?” The result of all this curiosity is the new, women’s-only Raven Mesh Velvet S-E15, which dropped on April 11 in two summer-ready colorways: Soft White Rose and White Soft Rose.
The ARKK Raven: Always Evolving, Always Iconic
Since 2015, the ARKK design team has been continually reimagining the Raven in, literally, hundreds of ways (by the way: we just dropped our 100th Raven colorway - ‘Desert Camo’ - this past winter, you can see it here). From experimenting with a variety of upper materials to introducing enhanced outsole features, the Raven is always evolving and, yet, each new edition retains the iconic silhouette and go-anywhere / do-anything versatility that first kick-started the ARKK adventure. Our original sneaker design is still our best-seller and, as we’ve discovered, a source of limitless potential for innovation and re-imagining.
Driven by curiosity. Designed for Women who dare.
Here at ARKK, we’re always asking the question, “what if?” What if we created our own camo design, pixel by pixel? What if we added a gum outsole? And, for our Pre Fall ‘18 collection, one question we asked was, “what if we made a Raven that was somehow distinctly feminine but also bold, texture-rich, and unlike any other sneaker out there?”
The result of all this curiosity is the new, women’s only Raven Mesh Velvet S-E15, which dropped this month in two summer-ready colorways: White Soft Rose and Soft Rose White. As ARKK Copenhagen’s lead sneaker designer (and female sneaker aficionado) Mette Engelbrecht explains, “we talked about introducing a unique, women's Raven for a long time, but we wanted the timing and the inspiration to be just right. Around the time we were developing the early Raven Mesh Velvet concepts we were also listening to our customers and followers on social media. They were asking us for more women’s-only styles - and it became clear that the time to go bold and release this ultra-playful Raven was now.”
How is designing a girls-only sneaker different than designing a unisex style?
How is designing a girls-only sneaker different than designing a unisex style you ask (most of ARKK’s kicks are unisex by the way)? “Well, when it comes to fashion in general, women tend to dare more,” says Mette, “both with styling and colors, so, there is so much freedom when designing specifically for women. Also, with girls-only, you can go all in on feminine concepts, which can be ‘soft and subtle’ or ‘bold and playful.’ It’s not necessarily all about adding glitter or diamonds, it’s about the small details that add a touch of femininity.” Details like, say, a touch of velvet...
Introducing Our Most Playful Raven Yet: the Raven Mesh Velvet
The central feature of the new Raven Velvet Mesh S-E15 is: (surprise!) plush velvet laces that subtly soften the sneaker’s silhouette and give it a playful burst of silky texture and luxe detailing. Due to its extraordinary softness and depth-of-color potential, velvet has been a prized textile for hundreds of years.
“From a designers point of view,” says Engelbrecht, “it’s always fun to play with new materials. And because velvet is such a lush material, by incorporating it into the Raven, you can achieve a really fresh look that redefines a familiar silhouette.” Ever since it first disrupted the luxury fabrics game back in the 14th century, velvet has long been associated with nobility, wealth, the high arts, and the exoctic lands of Asia, where it originated. So, the idea of combining such a premium, legacy textile with a minimalist streetwear sneaker was...just...so...cool to us. Basically, the idea wouldn’t go away - it gave us all the feels and so, we felt like we had to go for it.
So, ladies, whether you’re a pink-aholic or you just looking for a sneaker unlike anything else in your fashion arsenal, the Raven Velvet Mesh is our most playful Raven ever, and it was dreamed up, designed, and created specifically with you in mind. “I think we’re still very much in the early days of girls-only sneakers,” says Mette, “but the trend is growing fast, the market is expanding, and there’s so much potential when designing for the growing community of inspiring female sneakerheads and sneaker lovers out there. This is just the beginning.”