Inside adidas’ MakerLab With Three Emerging Designers

Helen Kirkum, Alex Nash and Shun Hirose discuss their collaborative sneakers, and what it's like to be a part of every step of the process

The adidas‘ MakerLab is essentially a hub for all of the brand’s ideations—those released and those archived. Within the walls of the previously inaccessible studio space, there are endless swatches of fabrics, space for sketching and crafting, a wealth of references, on-hand talent and advisors, and all of the machinery to bring concepts from paper to pavement. In the spirit of spotlighting emerging talent and …

Factory Visit: Italian Faucet-Maker Fantini

Production and headquarters on the shore of Lake Orta

Located not far from Lake Como and Lake Maggiore, Lake Orta is perhaps the least internationally known of Northern Italy’s lakes. But it’s here—in the small village of Pella, directly on the lake’s shore—that the Fantini company can be found. The lake is intrinsic to the company, and its employees. Fantini has been making faucets, showers and accessories here since 1947 and is deeply rooted in the …

Scoping Out Customization at the New Balance Factory

From the 998s to brand new NB1 3000v3 baseball cleats

Stepping onto the production floor of New Balance‘s Lawrence, MA factory reveals two important pillars of the brand. First, they employ hundreds of skilled workers from Lawrence and the surrounding towns to produce footwear stateside. Second, customization really is done by hand—at times by hand on technologically advanced machines, but hands touch every step of the process. Not all New Balance sneakers are made in …