Timberland Supports Communities of Color and Releases the Hip Hop Royalty Boot To Commemorate 50th Anniversary
To continue Timberland’s 50th anniversary celebration and honor the communities that helped propel the brand to where it is today, Timberland will host five youth design workshops in partnership with Black-owned creative brand CNSTNT:DVLPMNT. Founded by Timberland senior footwear designer, Chris Dixon, CNSTNT:DVLPMNT cultivates untapped talent and expands the creative community, particularly by engaging young communities of color. The Timberland x CNSTNT:DVLPMNT Youth Design Workshop tour will launch and conclude in New York City with stops in Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Charlotte this spring and summer.
Timberland and CNSTNT:DVLPMNT hosted their first one day workshop in New York in collaboration with youth development nonprofit Youth INC and footwear and apparel store Up NYC earlier this year. The collaboration gave 25 students the opportunity to learn about design as a potential career and introduced them to the fundamentals of footwear design, sketching, and exploring creative concepts and color first hand from design professionals at Timberland. During the event, the young creatives had the chance to design their own version of the Original Timberland® Boot. After the design session, NYC fashion and lifestyle authenticators alongside special celebrity guest Fat Joe reviewed the sketches. The leading design will be brought to life, offsite in Timberland’s prototyping lab, The Shed.
“There are less than 7% Black and Brown creatives in the design industry,” said Dixon. “We want to grow that number by introducing design as a career option early in the kids’ academic journeys, so they can consider building their skills now. In the workshop environment, I can see the kids latch on quick to the joys of design and that feels good. Using the iconic Timberland boot as a launchpad for their creativity really engages them, and it is so exciting to see the heights of their imagination.”
As part of Timberland’s 50-anniversary celebration of the Original Timberland® Boot, a staple in New York and hip-hop culture, the brand has introduced its Timberland® Hip Hop Royalty Boot, designed by Dixon himself. This version of the emblematic boot has been reimagined with intricate design details that speak to and incorporate elements of Hip Hop– from a bold purple and regal gold colorway to a graffiti logo treatment to mini-microphone capping the laces and a boom box hang tag.
While Black and Brown designers are under-represented in the design industry, the communities of color and Hip Hop have been instrumental in cultivating footwear culture. Timberland and Dixon plan to increase that statistic through the workshops that help students hone their creativity and open their eyes to new potential career paths. The Hip Hop Royalty Boots were designed to honor Timberland’s roots and celebrate the community that has been so important to the brand’s journey.