UK retailer Offspring opened their first location twenty years ago, in London’s Covent Garden. To celebrate this anniversary, Offspring have paired with Asics on a collaborative edition of the Gel Lyte V. The shoe features the same beige and teal color scheme as the interior of Covent Garden’s famous market building. It’s a simple enough story, right? History has a way of complicating things, though.
Covent Garden started out as an actual garden, in the form of a plot of agrarian land attached to Westminster Abbey. After Henry VIII found time in between weddings to seize the land and subsequently grant it to those bearing the Earl of Bedford title, it became a fashionable neighborhood for landed gentry, after one of the Earls, Francis Russell commissioned the construction of stately homes and the future landmark St. Paul’s church. It was during this time that the first open air market on the premises developed. The area went from upscale to red light district during the 18th century, and was restored during the Regency era when a neo-classical building was raised to organize the open-air market.
The circa 1830 building would come to sport the familiar beige brick and teal color scheme. The combination of a classic structure and distinctive colors actually make the Gel Lyte V the perfect model to pay homage to Offspring’s first home.
There are very few sneaker spots in the world that can be tied back, however indirectly, to Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries. Chalk up Tudor era street cred as one of the benefits to living in such a history-rich country.
If a size is not listed, it is sold out.