Karlie Kloss Blends Fashion, Sport and Technology in Adidas Collaboration

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“This is one of my babies,” said Karlie Kloss, the supermodel and entrepreneur, talking about her third collection with Adidas that incorporates QR codes that provide insight into the inspiration behind them.

“I’m somebody who’s super-passionate about fitness and technology and leading an active lifestyle, and helping to create access for others to do the same. This, for me, is a culmination of all the things that I care about boiled into this collection,” said the 29-year-old Kloss, in a Zoom interview Monday.

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The Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection features “fun and stylish design,” according to Kloss, but also has functionality around which they built a website that shows the behind-the-scenes of the collection and the ad campaign, and processes of bringing the collection to life.

The collection is being introduced Tuesday to early access AdiClub members and Thursday to the general public on adidas.com.

Born out of Kloss’ love of fashion and sport, the collection includes 17 apparel items, three footwear offerings and two accessories featuring tech-infused graphic prints. Pieces in the collection range from functional workout basics to modern lifestyle pieces made for comfort and functionality. Key pieces include the “KK” oversized cream pullover paired with cropped, flared black pants. Head-to-toe high-performance pieces feature tech-infused graphic prints, alongside a range of sport shorts in spring colors like yellow, and a pink varsity-style bomber jacket. Retail prices range from $40 to $140.

“The next generation of young adults are passionate about well-being and being active,” said Kloss. “That passion is the inspiration for this 22-piece collection, which combines style and functionality for versatile looks that can be worn every day, no matter the occasion.”

An image from Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection. - Credit: courtesy shot.
An image from Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection. - Credit: courtesy shot.

courtesy shot.

“I’m so fascinated by the ways in which fashion and technology can intersect; I truly believe it is the future of fashion,” Kloss said. “Working with Adidas to create this unique experience for consumers was so fun, and I’m beyond excited for people to not only enjoy the comfort and style of these pieces, but have a closer look at how we created them.”

Customers can take their iPhone and hover their camera above the QR code, which then takes them to a website showing the behind-the-scenes magic of how the collection came to life, including the making of the 3D shoe and what it was like being on set for the campaign. The QR code is available in several of the pieces.

“Really, at the core of this collection is innovative technology, including using Parley Ocean Plastic, recycled materials from plastic bottles collected from beaches and landfills. It’s very fashionable and also innovative in how it’s made,” said Kloss.

Part of her inspiration is her Kode With Klossy scholars, one of whom is her co-model, Ritika Shamdasani, who appears with her in the campaign. Kode With Klossy is the non-profit coding camp founded by Kloss that empowers young women to learn to code and become leaders in STEM. The camp, which attracts students from 100 countries, is free to scholars.

“It was so inspiring to have her on set with me, and be in the campaign for this,” said Kloss. After this summer, Kloss said she will have more than 10,000 scholars in her Kode With Klossy community. “It’s so inspiring to see these young women continue to tackle the world’s problems using their coding superpowers and skills and passions to create positive change. And also they’re quite entrepreneurial,” she said, noting that Shamdasani also has a fashion line called Sani.

A look from Adidas x Karlie Kloss, modeled on Ritika Shamdasani. - Credit: courtesy shot.
A look from Adidas x Karlie Kloss, modeled on Ritika Shamdasani. - Credit: courtesy shot.

courtesy shot.

“At Kode With Klossy, we really want to help these young women realize the importance of living an active, healthy lifestyle. We have run clubs within our community, the passion of these young people is something that drives me every day to help create more opportunities and experiences for them through what we do with our summer camps,” Kloss said, adding that she likes to incorporate the students in anything that she’s working on.

The Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection features Adidas’ Aeroready fabric technology throughout to keep wearers feeling dry as they move. It also uses No Dye technology, which works with a material’s natural color to cut out the water thirsty part of the process — the pre-treatment step of conventional dye techniques. The naturally colored fabric requires a post-treatment step to achieve the same performance qualities but yields an average 60 percent savings on water and energy. When it comes to hand feel, Kloss said the materials are “soft and so comfortable.”

An image from the Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection. - Credit: courtesy shot.
An image from the Adidas x Karlie Kloss collection. - Credit: courtesy shot.

courtesy shot.

Kloss said she’s been working with Adidas since 2016 and the journey has been a rewarding one.

“I’ve learned so much from the design team, all the big and small design details — the choices we can make to be really mindful in the materials we’re sourcing, the functionality and also the impact of the materials,” she said. “That’s one of the reasons I’m so proud to work with Adidas. As a global company, they’re really mindful of how they can take small steps toward more sustainable practices, and innovating and doing a ton of research and development on new materials.”

There’s appeal for Kloss in working toward the idea of a circular economy.

“[It’s great when] items are made from materials that can be one day broken down and reimagined and refabricated into new products. I’m somebody who has spent half my life in the fashion industry, and there’s a ton of responsibility and an opportunity to work toward a more sustainable future, and I think you don’t have to compromise quality, functionality or design to be more sustainable in our practices,” said Kloss.

In terms of how her design aesthetic has evolved, there have certainly been changes.

“Especially in the last few years being pregnant and being in a COVID[-19] world, I’ve spent a lot of time on Zoom. I’ve always been a big fan of athleisure, but especially so in the last few years. I love really simple, clean lines. I love real intention in the design and function of whatever I’m wearing. I also live a busy lifestyle and want my clothes to keep up with me and be able to transition through my day, which is really a big part of how we thought about designing this. I want something I’m going to wear time and time again. I want the pieces to live in your wardrobe for a long time,” she said.

Kloss said the clothing is designed for both the participant and spectator. There are high-performance sneakers for training and running, and also those for street style. There’s a three-piece legging set, with a sports bra, legging and long-sleeved shoulder piece. “You can go for a long run, do a yoga class or high-intensity training in the morning, or run to lunch with friends,” she said.

Eventually, Kloss said she hopes to do more with Adidas.

“This is an area I’m personally and deeply passionate about — fashion and also function. As much as I identify with my day job as a model, I think of myself as an athlete,” said Koss, noting that as a child she participated in tennis, basketball, swim, soccer and ballet, and then got into running as an adult.

To her, sports are a powerful way to learn about life and how to work with a team and be a leader, as well as to learn discipline and strength beyond just the physical. “There’s so much I learned as a young woman playing sports. That’s why I’m so passionate about helping other young women realize how valuable it can be and also how accessible it can be,” she said.

She recalled that her mother used to drive her and her three sisters to different sports. Nowadays, she said, “Everyone with a pair of trainers can lace their sneakers up, go for a walk or go for a run. Getting your body moving is so important for everyone,” Kloss said.

The plan is for lots of social media to promote the collection, and the campaign will be global. “We had tremendous success with the last two collections. They sold out and we’re really excited to continue sharing these pieces with the world,” said Kloss. “Generally, the area that I spend both learning about and also investing in is the future of this intersection of digital fashion and fashion and technology. For me, as an investor, I’m constantly learning about innovative businesses in this space. This collection really brings together all my passions.”

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