Today we take a closer look at the BAIT x Saucony Shadow Original “Cruel World.” Born out of a desire to build a shoe completely devoid of animal-based products and by-products, the “Cruel World” is a shoe designed not only to benefit animals but also A Place Called Home, a South Central, Los Angeles-based youth center. All told, BAIT was able to raise an astounding $15,628 USD for the youth center, which certainly makes the effort of producing an all-vegan shoe completely worth it. To cap off our closer look, we had a chance to catch up with BAIT owner Eric Cheng who was kind enough to share a little bit more on the unique collaboration.
What was the original inspiration or moment when you guys thought to do an all-vegan shoe?
We wanted to try something different and unique from the rest of the projects we were working on. From the beginning, we always wanted to give back to the community with BAIT, one way or another. We felt it was time for us to initiate a project that had a positive message. Saucony has a vegan line that we felt not too many people in the sneaker world were familiar with. We felt a vegan shoe was the perfect medium to carry out our concept and we wanted to take advantage of Saucony’s vegan capabilities.
In a seemingly short amount of time, you guys have put out several solid collaborations, how have you been able to do so and what has it taught you for future collabs?
I have been in the industry for 12 years before I started BAIT. We had the trust and support of multiple brands to start working on collaborations before the store was opened. It’s been very hectic, but fun working on the projects that are now starting to roll out to the public. Working on these collaboration projects, we have learned a lot about production and development, but above all it allowed us a look into the differences between the diverse brands’ culture, attention to details, and commitment to excellence. We took meticulous note of everything we did right and wrong and hope the experience will help us make better products in the future.
What other brands and models would you guys like to work on and what do you guys have planned next?
We have multiple projects on many of our favorite models from different brands at the moment. I think it would be great to design a completely new casual running model for one of the top brands. Next up for us is a series of ASICS Gel Lyte III’s that we spent a lot of time working on. Very excited about them and we’ll keep everyone tuned in.