Kith founder Ronnie Fieg’s success is a perfect example of using your network to your benefit and building on the opportunities you’re given. When Fieg turned 13 years old, he asked his cousin David Zaken, owner of New York City shoe store David Z, for a job instead of a Bar Mitzvah present. Fieg began working in the stock room, learning more about the footwear that would come to define his career. By 25, Fieg became the head buyer at the store and began managing special collaborations between the store and the brands it carried. After establishing David Z’s relationship with Asics, the brand allowed Fieg to go through the catalog and bring back the Gel Lyte 3, a sneaker Fieg had fond childhood memories of that was no longer in production. The shoe was limited to 756 pairs and when it sold out, Fieg had the confidence to create a brand for people like him who “are into special products that were limited”.
Kith’s first locations opened in 2011 as an attachment to Atrium, a popular streetwear retailer in New York. For the first year, Kith’s original products were limited to sneaker collaborations and the apparel that was made to go with it. In 2012, after altering and receiving compliments on a pair of Scotch & Soda pants he'd gotten as a gift, Fieg had the idea to create a version of his customized pants to sell at Kith. In 2012, what is now known as the “jogger pant” was starting to trend and the pants sold out faster every time Fieg ordered more. Eventually dubbed the Mercer Pant, the style is one that Kith stocks to this day. After the success of the Mercer Pant, Fieg took a leap of faith and turned his store into a brand.
In Kith’s short time as a brand, it has churned out products at a breakneck pace. Due to its independent ownership, Kith does not operate on a typical fashion calendar and has year round drops, constantly keeping its stores and website overflowing with new products. When Kith opened Kith Treats, a snack bar inside of its stores, it didn’t stop at selling ice cream but also hoodies and T-shirts as merch. Kith has also done countless collaborations with brands ranging from Vogue and Coca-Cola to Columbia and Tommy Hilfiger.
As Kith continues to grow, it will be interesting to see what and who Fieg and company work on next.
Who started Kith?
Kith was founded by Ronnie Fieg.
What does Kith mean?
“Kith” comes from the phrase “kith and kin” which means “friends and family”.
Is Kith owned by Nike?
No, Kith is independently owned.