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A year and a half ago, I traveled to Tokyo, and it immediately became my favorite city in the world. I found myself more inspired than ever before. Seeing the range of scenery in Tokyo became my new obsession. A good friend of mine, Junya, took me to a place where the cherry blossom is most impactful to the city. It made me very curious as to what the cherry blossom was and what it represented. It only occurs for 7-10 days of the year, and during that time, the people really honor and respect nature and the greater powers that be. After being able to see this natural phenomenon, it really gave me a concept to build a collection around. I began working on the R698 for the first time, and started to toy with its paneling. At this point in my career, I’m very into being destructive and diverting from the given path. So I decided to heighten the silhouette, after realizing that mid-cut runners are incredibly scarce today. Being able to construct my own silhouette with Puma will go down as one of my greatest career achievements. The Tokyo Sakura Collection with Puma is comprised of a classic R698, which represents the beginning of the seasonal transition, as well as the RF698 Mid, which represents the darker ending. The R698 is composed of microperforated pigskin suede, and utilizes burgundy colorblocking amidst the toe. The rest of the upper features a subtle light pink base with white overlay panels. The lateral formstripe is scythed to give a petal-effect. The Trinomic midsole unit includes a gradient to fit the entire color scheme. A tonal leather liner is the final detail on this model. The RF698 Mid’s upper is entirely microperforated, with nubuck used for the toe and pigskin for the remainder. A burgundy body is offset by a dark navy forefoot, which plays into the gradient dual-speckle Trinomic midsole. The inner-sock is fastened from neoprene, and includes both tongue and heel pulls for accessibility. The medial formstripe is asymmetrical, and made from navy 3M. Both models in the pack also feature tonal 3M KITH | Ronnie Fieg tongue labels, co-branded quilted insoles, three sets of lace options, and custom packaging. I believe this collection separates us from the pack. The development of launching a new colorway, concept, and silhouette simultaneously really creates a new lane for us. I am very proud of this project, down to every last detail. The Ronnie Fieg x Puma “Tokyo Sakura Collection” is set to release this Saturday, March 28, at 11AM EST at KITH Manhattan 644 Broadway, KITH Brooklyn 233 Flatbush Ave, and online at KithNYC.com. - RF