The Future Of Ronnie Fieg’s Kith Empire Doesn’t Rely On Hype

by MR Magazine Staff

Stepping into Kith’s Soho headquarters is a dizzying experience. In one glass paneled room, a team of technical designers are working on a top secret collaboration, while another duo builds a list of celebrity customers who will receive the newly released Virgil Abloh-designed Off-White collection for Kith. “We have Bella, Kylie, Kendall, who else?” Presiding over it all is Ronnie Fieg, creator of the retail powerhouse now known for their undisputed stronghold on the world of limited edition collaborations and buzzy pop-up concepts. He sits at his desk flanked by white plaster sneaker molds by friend and collaborator Daniel Arsham. A copy of Tommy Hilfiger’s autobiography, American Dreamer, sits on his desk. He’s just returned from Los Angeles, where he partnered with highbrow department store Maxfield, who gave him free reign to outfit a raw space with his latest vision to spread Kith to the masses. He chose to pay homage to his native Queens, recreating the iconic World’s Fair Globe in Flushing Meadows as the centerpiece of the week-long residency. Commanding just over 40 employees, Kith has come a long way from its humble beginnings. In November 2011, it opened its doors as a one-room sneaker shop accessed through Atrium, the now-shuttered luxury retailer created by Fieg’s uncle, Sam Ben-Avraham. It was briefly directed by menswear staple Nick Wooster under the moniker Atrium Wooster before closing its doors in July 2016. The vacated space, a soaring, double-height boutique on the corner of Broadway & Bleecker Street, made way for Fieg’s small outfit to blossom at light-speed. This flagship store is now just one of four permanent Kith locations, in addition to a Bergdorf Goodman shop-in-shop, and, of course, the sporadic pop-ups that have created a global craving for all things Kith. These ever-changing temporary storefronts have been a boon for the business, thanks to Fieg and his team who posses a unique power to put their pop-ups just about anywhere in the world, from Brazil to Tokyo, with lines snaking down the block. Read more at Observer.