TOMBOGO Saucony Butterfly Sole Mates Interview


Tommy Bogo — a Bay Space native and founding father of the style model TOMBOGO — has captured the hearts of streetwear fanatics for his revolutionary and utilitarian merchandise. Design is an avenue for him to speak his life experiences and learnings to propel the dialogue round operate and type. “I’ve these tales to inform and I actualize them via tangible clothes and items,” Bogo tells Hypebeast. “And as my model grows in streetwear and even elevates into excessive style, I need my experiences to proceed to tell my work.”

Bogo’s journey dates again to when he was a scholar in faculty working in the direction of a level in industrial design. His experiences at school helped him develop a knack for problem-solving via artistic initiatives, so he shaped his eponymous imprint in 2013. TOMBOGO began out in Oakland, California, and served as a platform for pop-ups and live shows for native artists like Guapdad 4000 and Larry June. 9 years later, Bogo’s style imprint has amassed a loyal fan base and earned co-signs from high-profile names in tradition equivalent to Bad Bunny – who sported his LED Scouter glasses on the 2019 MTV VMAs — J Balvin, Kehlani, Kid Cudi and,most not too long ago, Jack Harlow who was fitted in a TOMBOGO CityScape Knit sweatshirt on Saturday Night Live.

Tommy Bogo has grow to be the man for multifunctional items in addition to quirky equipment and devices equivalent to his double-knee cargo pants with reversible and detachable pockets, branded camcorders and tape weapons. The model tallied up its fourth runway present at New York Fashion Week and launched its first-ever sneaker collaboration alongside Saucony.

Bogo’s “The Butterfly” team-up with Saucony is the main focus for this newest installment of Hypebeast’s Sole Mates sequence. We caught up with the proficient designer to speak about his sneaker tradition experiences within the Bay Space, the method of bringing this Saucony collaboration to life and extra.

What obtained you into sneakers?

Skateboarding. I used to be a really avid skater from center college via highschool. That’s the place I obtained lots of my model affect, from manufacturers like Spitfire, Vans, Etnies, eS, Osiris and Adio. As a skater, you’d run via footwear rapidly so I used to be all the time taking a look at footwear that I used to be going to save lots of up for after which damage inside a couple of weeks. Skating is the place I began to get into [Nike] SB Dunks and Janoskis — then clearly these popped off as an precise style assertion.

What was sneaker tradition like for you rising up within the Bay Space?

I bear in mind Bows and Arrows in Berkeley was a hub for streetwear and sneakers for me in addition to 510 Skateshop. These two shops had been my world apart from the Web. I wasn’t actually the kind to camp out for hyped sneakers, particularly as a result of I knew I might simply be skating in them and scuffing them up. For my dad and mom, skate footwear had been the edge of what they might purchase for me rising up and if I wished anything then I used to be going to have to save lots of my very own cash for them.

How would you examine Bay Space sneaker tradition to the place you at present dwell in LA, and NY?

New York is certainly essentially the most superior. LA has obtained some humorous matches [laughs], however I’ll say that there are robust developments on the market. I feel staple items and types like Fear of God ESSENTIALS make a lot sense for the [LA] demographic and what they need, which is usually good sweats, tees, a stable hat and good footwear. I nearly really feel like in case you are within the style scene, you then’re form of like an outlier there in LA. The Bay has a combination, however it’s tougher to seek out those that know style within the Bay. If you do discover them although, they undoubtedly know they’re stuff.

TOMBOGO merchandise lean closely on performance and sustainability. How did you land on this ethos, and what position you see your model taking part in within the streetwear area?

I landed on that ethos via a mission that I did at San Francisco State. I studied industrial design and my senior mission was to design one thing that solved an issue. And inside that, the task required me as an instance the method of how I obtained there and the way every bit is shaped into that performance. Moreover, every presentation of that course of needed to be simply as lovely as the ultimate product, and in order that’s what it began with. It helped me understand what design is about and the way envisioning one thing solves an issue, and if it’s not that deep, the way it at the very least capabilities in a manner that’s going to be useful to you.

“Once I’m making an attempt to supply an out-of-the-box concept, I nonetheless need that center floor of it really being a sturdy product.”

When did Saucony enter the image for you? Had been you rocking the model rising up?

I used to be undoubtedly all the time conscious of them. I personally didn’t put on them once I was youthful, however I did have buddies who ran cross-country and observe and discipline that may inform me that Saucony was their go-to working model. Having that perspective from them was all I wanted to know that they put lots of R&D into their working know-how. Once I’m making an attempt to supply an out-of-the-box concept, I nonetheless need that center floor of it really being a sturdy product.

How did the chance to work with Saucony come about within the first place?

Saucony’s head of brand name partnerships and advertising simply DM’d me. It was tremendous informal and I might’ve simply missed it, however we hopped on a name and every thing simply snowballed from there. They did an preliminary sponsorship at our final runway present on the roof of Spring Studios and that was our first toe within the water of seeing what we might do collectively. I really wore the prototype of this shoe myself for that present and it was a really small element that solely sure individuals observed. Jian DeLeon from Nordstrom observed them and it obtained on @muleboyz a yr earlier than it really dropped. It was an natural relationship from the beginning.

Not many younger designers have the luxurious of touchdown their very own sneaker collaborations, not to mention creating an authentic silhouette. Was that what you wished to do proper off the bat and was there any pushback from Saucony?

It undoubtedly needed to be my very own silhouette. If Saucony requested me to make one other colorway of one among their current fashions I almost certainly would have handed. Nonetheless, they already had a unfastened concept of the silhouette that they’d pitched to me and it labored out completely as a result of it was within the path of what I wished to make when it comes to my first sneaker collaboration. Granted, it was solely handed via a sure group inside the firm, the upper up company individuals didn’t perceive it. It wasn’t a simple course of. Everybody internally that labored on this takes lots of satisfaction in getting this out and having the profitable drop that it did as a result of we bought out, which was superior.

Are you able to break down its total design?

The concept was born from a narrative that Saucony shared with me a couple of child who ran a marathon in clogs and ended up successful. He killed it, however his toes had been most likely killing him. So the thought with this two-layer design was to create a clog that embodies every thing that everybody’s actually into about clogs proper now, however make it right into a wearable model that you possibly can tackle a run, on the treadmill, down a mountain and into the water.

What number of prototypes did it’s a must to undergo earlier than you landed on the ultimate design?

It was really fairly on level. We had been each all the time aligned on the tip purpose, however I actually appreciated their assist when it got here to the shoe’s technicalities. For instance, there’s an interlocking system on the underside of the clog and the underside of the boot and there’s a grip that basically locks in and prevents you from slipping — that was one thing we needed to take our time to determine. And in addition, when it comes to multi-functional, modular design, the bootie was an integral part. We spent lots of time on how that match completely contained in the outer shell in addition to the supplies. That was the most important R&D piece after which it simply got here right down to colorways.

“The palette was really an accident … “Sage Moon” is the happiest accident that I’ve ever landed on.”

What’s the which means behind its Butterfly moniker? Is there any significance behind the colour palette?

Saucony had the identify for it as we had been going into it, however it’s humorous: “Tonbo” means “dragonfly” in Japanese so there’s significance for the sequel to presumably be “The Dragonfly” as a result of it has much more relevance to my identify. “The Butterfly” title is derived from the shoe being interchangeable and having an evolution kind of beat.

The palette was really an accident, which is the funniest half. I don’t suppose I’ve shared with any press retailers but! It was speculated to be an all grey colorway, however once I noticed the pattern come again, I spotted I used to be most likely utilizing the mistaken Pantone e-book. And once they got here again, I assumed they had been exhausting and I liked them. I already wished to do one thing that had a desaturated jade hue and this got here out completely. With manufacturing, R&D and every thing, the timeframe was so tight and I needed to decide from 4 colorway samples that we made. I really didn’t need to redo something however I couldn’t even when I wished to and I genuinely actually appreciated this colorway. The official colorway is known as “Sage Moon” and it’s the happiest accident I’ve ever landed on.

Can we count on extra colorways to launch down the highway?


Did the uprise of clogs and mules encourage this design or have you ever all the time wished to craft such a sneaker?

I undoubtedly began to put on extra clogs through the pandemic and I feel that the multi-functionality facet of issues form of stemmed from there. My convertible double knee cargo pants had been additionally conceived throughout that point, and actually knowledgeable lots of the designs I did together with this sneaker. I prefer to take acquainted silhouette, one thing that individuals already get pleasure from, and put my very own twist on them This mannequin is a first-rate instance of that.

“There’s nostalgic worth inside sneakers and I feel that feeling is what lots of like-minded individuals worth. You’re both holding a spot prior to now that you just cherish otherwise you’re appreciating one thing for its potential to push ahead, and that’s one thing I actually admire.”

Any such footwear has actually cemented itself within the style lexicon and appears to have actual post-pandemic endurance. How do you see it progressing?

I feel it should proceed and begin to advance. After we dropped this, different shoe manufacturers from Jordan Brand to adidas began making rubber footwear with inserts. It continues to achieve success as a result of individuals like having the choice to interchange with one piece.

Why are sneakers and their tales necessary to you?

I simply suppose again to skate skate sneakers, what these meant for me and the way I obtained into sneaker tradition from there. There’s nostalgic worth inside sneakers and I feel that feeling is what lots of like-minded individuals worth. You’re both holding a spot prior to now that you just cherish otherwise you’re appreciating one thing for its potential to push ahead, and that’s one thing I actually admire.


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