A couple of months ago, when NBA superstar Dwyane Wade
announced he'd be launching a new apparel and footwear company, WADE
, in 2013, we weren't sure what to expect. Would it be just another licensed product with little star involvement? Or was another celebrity about to embark on a ego-driven disaster of a creative project?
Answer: Neither, as it turns out.
It looks like Wade is taking his new brand super-seriously and going out about things in a well-thought-out and methodical manner—i.e. he's hiring award-winning designers to help him out.
Today, WADE's backer, Li-Ning Company, announced that the brand has hired New York-based shoe designer (and darling of the fashion industry) Alejandro Ingelmo
as the label's first Creative Consultant for Special Projects. According the announcement, Wade "personally selected Ingelmo" to work on two sneakers for WADE.
"I've been a fan of AI for a long tie now and from the moment I partnered with Li-Ning I've been excited to bring him into our design team," Wade said. "Alejandro's knowledge of mixing fashion and street elements into his designs mirrors my personal style and the vision for the footwear we will bring to the market."
Ingelmo's first two shoes for the WADE brand will be basketball-inspired lifestyle sneakers that will take their cues from the shoes Wade is planning on wearing during games this season. The Ingelmo-designer WADE shoes will debut in spring 2013 at New York Fashion Week.
"Working with Dwyane and Li-Ning is a great opportunity for me and I'm excited for us to collaborate on some amazing products," Ingelmo said. "Dwyane's style pushes boundaries with his edgy approach to traditional silhouettes. I've been very impressed with the on-court WADE sneaker designs I've seen so far and they're helping inspired my design, which I believe will be something very special and unlike anything else out there."