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August 15, 2012

Cole Haan, Jen & Oli Chelsea Collection

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BOLD. PLAYFUL. PRAGMATIC.

On September 10th, 2012, Cole Haan will release its highly anticipated footwear design partnership with Jen Brill & Olivia Kim. Fusing timeless craft and signature innovation with modern New York style, the unique collaboration debuts three exclusive versions of Cole Haan’s Fall ’12 Chelsea Pump, each presented in four vibrant color variations.    

“Jen and Olivia epitomize the unrelenting creative spirit of New York City,” said Cole Haan Creative Director, Phil Russo. “Their bold individual style, demanding lives and their understanding of our brand make them the perfect collaborative partners for Cole Haan.”

“Growing up with the Cole Haan brand, there’s something super cool about having the opportunity to make them once again part of our lives in a modern but traditionally respectful way,” added Kim.

The exclusive team-up combines the duo's downtown sensibility and fast-paced careers with Cole Haan’s effortless style and functionality. The pumps—a strap sandal, ankle strap pump and ankle boot in rich and eye-catching fall shades and textures—will serve as a go-to for girls with on-the-run lifestyles. From uptown to downtown, this newly realized Chelsea collection is sleek and professional for day, but can last all night too. “We run around New York City day and night and need shoes that can keep up with us,” said Brill. “The styles needed to be the perfect compliment to any situation, any time of day, but with the ‘wow’ factor reaction—like, 'Wow! Those shoes are awesome!’”

Working with Cole Haan Design Director, Ann-Marie Mountford-Chu, the team tapped Cole Haan’s rich history and product archive, infusing modern inspirations and design techniques to create a striking and versatile collection. Utilizing clean, elegantly constructed silhouettes, the collection comprises three unique Chelsea Pumps—each constructed from the highest quality Italian suede and presented in a boldly playful color palette including rich, vibrant jewel-toned purple, green and orange alongside softer, more neutral navy, burgundy and grey. Carefully considered design details—such as shortened lasts, exaggerated down curves and increased height on suede-wrapped chunky heels—create modern and exciting interpretations of Cole Haan timeless styles.

Having achieved the eye-catching visual attitude of the collection, the team aslo had to infuse pragmatic innovations for demanding, fast-paced lives. “They obviously have to be cute,” said Kim, “but living in New York City, they also have to be wearable and feel good too. This was really important to us both, and something we knew Cole Haan could make happen.” Featuring innovative cushioning in the forefoot and 120mm heel, paired with a memory foam sock bed, each style presents unrivaled fit and flexibility—delivering a stylish solution for New York life where days are long and nights often longer.

The Cole Haan, Jen & Oli Fall ’12 Chelsea Collection will be available at Cole Haan SoHo, Opening Ceremony NY, LA & London and select other leading retailers globally beginning September 10th, 2012.

About the Collection

The Cole Haan, Jen & Oli Chelsea Strap Sandal ($528)

The first shoe designed in the collection, the Chelsea Strap Sandal takes inspiration from a women’s slotted leather fisherman sandal by Cole Haan from the mid 1990s—a personal favorite of both Brill and Kim.  Presented in Italian suede, two versions utilize multi-color strapping across the forefoot—one combining rich purple with bright orange, blue and green, and the other featuring light greys with burgundy and navy. Two additional versions are offered in solid royal green, and deep burgundy.

The Cole Haan, Jen & Oli Chelsea Ankle Strap Pump ($528)

This open-toe sandal features a high vamp inspired by a 1970s Cole Haan clog, but carefully cumbered to provide a curved, more refined profile. Featuring a suede-covered buckle, the Chelsea Ankle Strap Pump is designed to sit lower on the ankle, delivering a more elegant and feminine silhouette. The Ankle Strap Heel is available in four color-blocked versions ranging from acute color duos—such as green and purple—to closer color spectrum combinations—such as orange and red.

The Cole Haan, Jen & Oli Chelsea Ankle Boot ($548)

Characterized by refined piping details and exaggerated tasseled laces, the Chelsea Ankle Boot takes the traditional desert boot and delivers a smarter, more refined interpretation. Expert boot making techniques lend increased curvature to the toe, while the subtle piping details unify the upper panels with the midsole and flat form, updating and amplifying an archival classic.  The Ankle Boot is presented in four suede options of solid navy, burgundy, red, and green.

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About Jen Brill

A native of New York’s Upper East Side, Jen Brill studied fine art at Parsons The New School for Design and SVA. Constant in NYC’s creative community, she has managed fine art photographers commercially, including Hanna Liden, Richard Kern, and Katy Grannan, as well as represented fashion photographers and stylists such as Mel Ottenberg, Theo Wenner, and Max Farago. Currently a creative consultant, Brill has worked with brands that range from Proenza Schouler and Opening Ceremony to Chanel. She also serves on the board of non-profit organization RxART, collaborating with major contemporary artists on its hospital installations and commissioning them for the charity’s annual coloring book Between The Lines.

About Olivia Kim

An influential figure in the New York fashion industry for the past ten years, Olivia Kim, Opening Ceremony’s VP of Creative, sets the vision and mood for the label’s ready to wear collections and its growing retail fleet, as well as the company’s visual identity. Overseeing Opening Ceremony’s collaborative partnerships, which have included Chloe Sevigny, Rodarte, Levi's, Agnes B., and Nike, she has also played important roles launching emerging designers Pamela Love, Suno, and Patrik Ervell. Olivia resides in Chinatown with her French bulldog named Secret Spy. 

About the Cole Haan Chelsea Pump

Designed to move effortlessly through ever-changing city terrain, Cole Haan’s innovative Chelsea Pump provides unrivaled cushioning, flexibility and fit.  Featuring a memory foam sock bed and new, more flexible airbag technology, the enhanced construction techniques, improved fit, and lightweight materials better meet urban anatomical demands.  A stylish solution to the rigors of city life, the Chelsea heel delivers fashionable staying power for long days, with even later nights.

About Cole Haan

Founded in 1928, Cole Haan is an iconic American designer and retailer of premium men’s and women’s footwear. Driven by craftsmanship, style and design innovation, Cole Haan products are intelligently constructed to conquer the streets of New York City.