Breaking News: Ipath Is Coming Back

Can you cuff your pants with Cats doe?

Can you cuff your pants with Cats doe?

A number of days ago, massive news was dropped – Ipath announced that they’re coming back.

The announcement was made through their FB page and their announcement has received an overwhelmingly positive reaction. This surprises us (but doesn’t), considering that most people don’t quite understand how Ipath ended up going under. As we recall, “The Other Ones” was originally an Ipath production and was set to come out, but once the higher ups at Timberland (their parent company at the time) noticed that the brand was going to see their unfortunate fate, they decided to pull the plug on the entire program. Rather than endure the dip in sales and hope for the best after the video dropped, they prematurely closed the doors on a great brand. From there, the entire Ipath team, or whatever remained of it, put in their own money towards editing and managed to put out the video themselves. If you haven’t seen it, please do, as it is such an underrated and incredible video. The soundtrack alone is noteworthy. In lieu of not being able to find the full video online, watch Ryan Lay’s part here and Ben’s part is here – both are must-watch material.

As we await Ipath’s next moves, a couple of things are obviously uncertain. No one knows exactly who bought the licensing back, we have no idea who will be on the team and, most importantly, we have no idea whether there is an actual fanbase to carry this once iconic brand. What we know for certain is they need a creditable team to make Ipath cool again. From our vantage point, the only reason a brand like eS could resurrect from the dead was because they had enough of a desired catalog in their arsenal. Unfortunately, the same can’t necessarily be said for Ipath. Sure, they have Cats & Grasshoppers, but aside from those two models that don’t have as much depth as, let’s say an Accel, there’s no hardcore demand for Ipath as their was for eS. No one has created an instagram page campaigning for Ipath to comeback. There’s no dedicated forum page yearning for Ipath’s return and in all honesty, is there room for another skate shoe brand when the preexisting ones are already having a hard time competing against the powers that be?

And when we mention Ipath needing a team, we don’t just mean “Johnny Hardflip” who can handle the next handrail in sight. They will need some team riders who actually embody Ipath’s message versus just putting on whoever is available/up for grabs. As true as that statement is, is there an actual professional/am skateboarder out there that actually embodies Ipath? The only one we can think of is Guru Khalsa, but otherwise it would appear that Ipath was only meant for the ’90s – early 2000’s.

Ipath’s overall aesthetic appealed to Rastas, Eco-friendly types, grassroots hippies and a few alternative thinkers. While there’s nothing wrong with any of those demographics/personalities, are there enough of them to support Ipath’s difficult uphill battle? It’s been proven that kids don’t necessarily care about the politics within skating as the older generation adhered to, so it’s hard to think they’d care about a brand with a message and morals, but that doesn’t mean Ipath shouldn’t try. For instance, if they can bring back a sustainable/functional story to skateboard footwear (since we are so wasteful with shoes compared to the general population), they’ll have a fighting chance. Essentially, they can pick up where Habitat Footwear left off, but if there wasn’t a market for them, will there be a market for Ipath?

If they were to take this approach, they could use materials and processes that last long but have a lower impact on the environment. It could be a double whammy for them, their story, and their appeal to modern skateboarders, but only time will tell…

Comments

  1. Swash

    December 7, 2015 9:09pm

    I’ve always loved IPath, they’ve been my favorite brand since the day I started skateboarding. I’m interested to see who owns the name now (hopefully a skater) and if they want to continue with IPath’s image. Quality is a big factor as well. Before they shut down I felt the quality of their shoes was not up to par. Vulc shoes fell apart quick, and the “cupsole” models had little to no padding making them basically bulky vulc shoes. I hope IPath returns as a skater owned brand so I can continue to love and support the brand.

    Reply
  2. Drgraffenberg

    December 7, 2015 11:26pm

    I had the yogi’s great shoes. Hope they bring back some OG models

    Reply
  3. dav

    December 8, 2015 1:34am

    it will just be like axion. all the 35 year olds who used to wear the shoes have been wearing dunks for the last 8 years and will have no reason to switch back.

    Reply
  4. BFG STRENGTH

    December 8, 2015 3:38am

    I-PATH I JAH SKATE. FOLLOW YOUR PATH

    Reply
  5. jaye

    December 8, 2015 11:06am

    Duffs should make a come back

    Reply
  6. Matt

    December 9, 2015 4:04pm

    Ipath always has been and always will be my favorite skate shoes of all time. I’ve went through so many pairs of there shoes from cats to grasshoppers to there snow boot models. I recently (about 2-3 months ago) just got a nice sizes tear in my brown/suede/tan ipath cats, and i’ve been searching frantically everywhere for a new pair – they’ve always been my all time favorite shoe! I hope for a speedy return along with some OG models (cats please). 🙂

    Reply
  7. wild ethnic

    December 29, 2015 4:57pm

    If they wanted to keep the whole organic earth friendly vibe going maybe there could be a market for a company that makes 100% vegan footwear that actually looks dope.It’s impossible to find genuinely fresh vegan sneakers. Drop the skateboarding alliance and make it a vegan friendly “lifestyle” brand. Have absolutely nothing to do with sandals or surfing to avoid making it another Sanuk and make it like a vegan Clarks Sportswear or Clae kind of thing. Just because I’m vegan doesn’t mean I have to dress like John the Baptist wandering the desert looking for Phish tickets. Avoid putting big gaudy ipath logo’s on everything and maybe the now 30 something year olds who grew up with the brand might get back behind it. Only way I’d be interested in a revamped Ipath.

    Reply
    • Broken Silence

      April 19, 2016 6:11pm

      Agree with this 100%. I see vegan skate shoes pop up every now and then from eS, Etnies, etc, however iPath always served as a go-to brand for me in the past. We will see what happens. In the meantime, I recommend veganskateblog.com – they do a pretty good job of finding vegan skate shoes.

  8. Gabe

    December 30, 2015 3:12pm

    Too bad Louis Marnell isn’t around anymore

    Reply
  9. mustard

    January 1, 2016 4:42am

    the cat lows are one of my alltime favorite shoes. i would buy plenty of those, seeing as how my pair is beat up. they had really great older models as well. and a proper slimmed down cat that Isnt vulc would be awesome as well. but i agree, alot of people wouldnt be switching from their dunks.

    Reply
  10. Don

    January 26, 2016 5:19pm

    Grasshoppers are the best skate shoe ever made for all 4 seasons and the hands down best impact shoe ever! The coconut husk insole was a rad innovation too! So hyped right now!

    Reply
  11. Andrew

    January 26, 2016 5:30pm

    Ipath was my favorite company as a teenager and thats after I got good at skating. The Grasshoppers were hands down the best skate shoe ever made and it felt like it was designed for me and my wide feet. Best shoe for all 4 seasons! They revamped it even with a different model and innovated shoes forever with Organic coconut husk insoles insoles! Rad team too! Matt Rodriguez pro models with the wicker look were amazing and the coolest sole design iv ever seen! I was heart broken when they went under and stocked up from their website that sold them for 30$ towards the end. You guys didnt mention the Cricket which was their equivalent of a Accel and the sherpa lined shoes that made so much sense when skating the east coast winters! So hyped right now! I’ll rock em as long as they make em! And their team was gnar! Kenny Reed video part is needed in 2016 more than anyone else if you ask me.

    Reply
  12. Mike

    April 23, 2016 6:46pm

    I’ve always rocked ipath j just bought a pair of the iconic xl the other day from a local shop who is liquidating their ipath stock I hope they come back soon I don’t wanna have to find a new shoe to rock long live ipath follow your path!

    Reply
    • Ripped Laces Staff

      April 24, 2016 11:16pm

      What local shop of yours still has pairs of them? Super interested!

  13. Ken

    October 3, 2016 7:27pm

    Bring back ipath! Such an outstanding brand….cats and grasshoppers were bangin’, but never forget, the Kenny Reeds, such a great shoe! Please bring back in my/our lives, skateboarding needs a breath of fresh air right about now.

    Reply
  14. Alan

    November 24, 2016 2:44pm

    Been about a year now. Where they at?

    Reply
    • Ripped Laces Staff

      November 24, 2016 7:24pm

      We tried reaching out to them for a follow-up on this and didn’t get a response… 🙁

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