words: Ally Watson
“THEY’RE ALL MY BABIES,” exclaims Chloe Kim when previewing her new capsule collection with Roxy. Candy- coated pastels mixed with bright pops of red fill an outerwear rack behind her, displaying the full range of Roxy’s new Chloe Collection. It is without a doubt through a true alignment of her aesthetic and captivation for fashion and street style that the collection came to life, marking the first time that she has worked so closely with a brand to collaborate on the gear she puts to the test day in and day out.
It was in late 2020 when Chloe announced that she had joined the Roxy team and with that, came the opportunity to begin working on the Chloe Collection, a full spectrum softgoods line coupled with a collaboration on the Roxy XOXO Pro snowboard. Chloe was able to work with both the brand’s team on the softgoods and with Barrett Christy from Mervin Manufacturing on the board. Stephanie Micci, global head of design at Roxy, recalls a fantastic experience with Chloe. “She is wonderful to work with,” Stephanie extolls. “She is so collaborative and really knows what she likes, which makes the design process so easy. She provided many ideas of colors and styles, all the while drawing on her favorite, tried-and-tested Roxy silhouettes for ultimate comfort.”
Kim’s status as a public figure has reached a level of celebrity seldom met by professional snowboarders. Her appearances are stacking up as fast as her gold medals, earning her a place in the sport that is rivalled by few. Chloe’s level of stardom outside of sport has landed her an onslaught of ovation, including invites to the Met Gala, a Fortnite set, a cereal box, a Barbie, and the cover of Time Magazine, to name a few. Her reach is far and wide, making the Roxy capsule exactly that.
When laid side by side, the softgoods capsule collection and the XOXO Pro board build upon each other to create a cohesive feel loaded with whimsical pastels, marble patterns, and in-your- face brights that are reflective of Chloe’s ability to teeter between fierce and elegant in both her riding style and fashion sense.
The softgoods feature a bubbly, welcoming color palette that is very on brand for Chloe. She provided creative direction for the collection, organizing and sharing images and ideas of everything she imagined the product to become with the same meticulous preparation she takes into competition. Color, texture, fit, fabric, and style were all stacked up to create the initial design. Of course, the collection isn’t solely based on style, but also function. “We started with Chloe’s favorite silhouettes to snowboard in as the basis for everything,” explains Stephanie. “And then we adapted to meet her needs: long jackets for comfort, styles that don’t affect peripheral vision, specifically designed hood snaps, and many other nuanced details that make this collection a perfect fit.”
During the creative design process, Chloe was able to build a functional outerwear kit that was streamlined throughout the whole offering to meet her needs as a rider while staying true to her style. The fit of the collection is a relaxed, oversized design with longer-cut jackets and loose-fitting pants. The Chloe Jacket is equipped with an optional hood tie down to keep unwanted fabric out of a rider’s face, a feature specifically requested by Chloe and specific to her collection that is rooted in the performance needs one experiences when going double- overhead in the pipe but that anyone taking runs at their local resort can appreciate. Each piece includes thoughtful, sustainably manufactured aspects including solution dyed fabrics, nature-friendly chemistry, and recycled materials. From start to finish, the Chloe Collection blends its namesake’s bubbly personality with her fierce competition style to create a line that doesn’t sacrifice function or fit. “We always try to marry function and form with fashion, which is a true balance” continues Stephanie. “Chloe is really into fashion and self- expression but also is one of the best snowboarders on the planet, so it is key to have product that matches both her personal style and performance level.”
The collection doesn’t stop at the outerwear and accessories. It was the impetus in building the new look and feel of the Roxy XOXO Pro board. Barrett Christy, legend in her own right and head of women’s product design and marketing at Mervin Manufacturing, worked with Chloe to evolve the XOXO board to what it is now in 2023. A staple in the Roxy lineup long before Chloe joined the brand, the XOXO underwent some fine tuning with Chloe in mind. Barrett has worked with an extensive list of athletes and accompanying teams to create pro model boards and rework in-line product to meet the needs of the Roxy, Gnu, and Lib Tech riders. Her own prodigious, trail-blazing career makes her a guiding light in women’s product development; she offered the perfect storm of skills to guide Chloe through her first board collaboration.
“This was the first time she had the opportunity to have any input on a board throughout her career so far,” says Barrett, excited to have been able to work with Chloe on the XOXO Pro. Before having an overall sense of the aesthetic of the softgoods collection, Barrett connected with Kim’s team of tuners to find out what worked for her and what path the XOXO would take. In Barrett’s experience, board techs Ryan McDermott and Kenny Nault “always have great insights with how boards are holding up and performing. They see details in the boards that help us make modifications.”
The evolution of the XOXO into the XOXO Pro was strongly guided by Chloe’s collaboration, which was a smooth process due to Kim’s easygoing nature and unfettered talent. “She had talked about in the past how she had broken boards and hopped on rentals and competed just fine,” says Barrett. “She is so confident in her skills that she can truly ride anything.” To this end, the board features details that meet the needs of elite riders while remaining accessible to a variety of consumers. The black sintered base with an inset logo keeps the board running fast and smooth without compromising the integrity of overall board construction. Mervin has made a name for itself in the sustainability field with deep-rooted practices dedicated to being sensitive to the environment. Christy adds, “The XOXO is made at Mervin with all the same technologies, environmentally conscious construction, and materials we use for Gnu and Lib Tech.”
This board is very much a product of Mervin Manufacturing and proves itself as a high-performance freestyle charger equipped with classic Mervin tech. According to Barrett, it is “definitely the top of the line for Roxy snowboards and Chloe’s involvement boosts that for sure.” The XOXO Pro boasts a C3 camber profile, reserved for Mervin’s most aggressive boards that blends camber with mild rocker between the feet for a true performance ride. It has a sustainably harvested FSC wood core made up of aspen and paulownia to keep the board light and snappy, and maintains powerful edge hold with Mervin’s serrated edge technology, Magne-Traction. Mervin’s eco-construction and zero hazardous waste process parallel the sustainability features seen in Roxy softgoods, allowing the collection to come full circle in this department.
While Chloe was trying out variations of the XOXO Pro, she was able to bring the overall look of the capsule collection from Roxy over to Mervin to dial in the board graphics. The muted pastels and marbled ribbon design on the topsheet were taken directly from the outerwear line to build a cohesive look.
Welcoming Chloe to the Roxy team has cemented a relationship that created opportunities for all parties and the Chloe Collection came to life with passion. With headlines flashing and invites flowing, Chloe’s status as a public figure continues to calcify. Creating the collection with Roxy and collaborating on the board with Mervin demonstrates her ability to diversify style within snowboarding while honoring her interests outside of the sport to create something so many can enjoy.
This article first appeared in Snowboard Magazine issue 19.1, October 2022.