By Woody Hochswender
Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Adidas Golf unveiled its surprising new direction for golf apparel this week in New York. The new line is called Fashion Performance and it represents an entirely new category for the company, one of the industry leaders.

The company held its fashion show at the Milk Studios, in a penthouse overlooking the Hudson River, where waiters passed out itsy-bitsy hors d'oeuvres (kind of a trend these days) amid displays of Adidas shoes and white TaylorMade clubs,

The white drivers have given TaylorMade a market share of more than 40 percent in woods and 18 tournament wins, according to Mark King, chief executive of TaylorMade-adidas.

King added that Adidas deserves credit for changing the standard golf "uniform" —cotton polo shirt and khakis—toward a more technical, athletic look over the last 10 years.

The Fashion Performance collection moves the well-known, technology-laden Adidas approach in a wilder and younger direction. It features very bright colors and bold color-blocked designs; youthful, street-inspired shapes; and a retro Adidas logo printed on an oval badge. The clothes retain many Adidas trademarked performance features, like fast-drying ClimaCool fabrics.

"It's more street styling, but you can play it on the golf course," said Tiss Dashan, the senior director for global design for Adidas Golf. "Technology is what we do. Our testing ground is the Tour."

The new clothes will be worn on Tour by Jason Day, who appeared in a short video clip.

In conjunction with the launch of Fashion Performance, Adidas Golf also has introduced a line of colorful footwear, adiSTREET, featuring spikeless shoes with full-grain leathers. Some Adidas executives were wearing them at the event, showing that the shoes, which rubber traction lugs instead of spikes, can be worn off the course.


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