The Latvian phrase “Dievs svētī, kafija” translates to “God bless coffee!”
Skater Madars Apse embraces coffee with such fervor that he looked to the beloved beverage as the primary inspiration for his new DC Shoes Wallon S Madars Apse skate shoe, a new release in three shades of brown to represent all types of coffee.
“I love coffee and I know a lot of people on this planet are down for some café con leche, café au lait or some cappuccino,” Apse tells SI.com. “So I wanted an all-brown shoe and the first thing related that came to my mind was coffee.”
The shoe’s vulcanized rubber outsole features asymmetrical construction for improved durability on the flex-grip tread pattern, something Apse says “makes it look a bit different from all the other skate shoes.” He adds that he included suede for “great board feel” and Ortholite sock liners for added tech in the shoe.
But it was the design aspect that Apse enjoyed most. The Latvian skater wanted all brown for a “classic feel,” something that represents both a skate shoe and one that can be worn to formal events without feeling out of place.
In addition to the shoe’s three different browns representing the varieties of coffee, Apse says, coffee-inspired symbols reside on the insole and his Latvian phrase graces on the tongue.
What’s next for the design inspiration of Apse? “Who knows, inspiration is all around us,” he says. “Maybe it will be tea next time, maybe something else? I feel like I would still try to keep creating something classy.”
Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, sneakers and technology for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.