Adidas Originals Store Opens Today In Square

Jose L. A. camacho

The Adidas Originals Store celebrates the grand opening of its third North American location last night in Harvard Square.

The Adidas apparel store that closed up its Mass. Ave. storefront three years ago has reinvented itself with a look from the past.

This morning, the Adidas “Originals Store” will open its doors to the Cambridge crowd, selling reintroduced clothing and footwear from its classic lines.

“We have a very exclusive product here and we feel that the market is the right fit,” Kerry Barnes, the director of retail stores for Adidas, said last night at a promotional party for the new store.

According to Adidas spokesperson Kelly Middal, all products for sale at the Cambridge location take their cue from past designs and bear the clover-like “trefoil” logo, which was first introduced in 1972.

“People like to call this gear retro, but it’s not,” she said. “These products are actually the original.”

The store carries a selection of track jackets, pants and shorts and several models of sneakers.

Only two other classics stores exist in the United States, in the SoHo area of New York City and in South Beach in Miami, though some of the revamped line is available through other retailers, including the Tannery in the Square.

Barnes said he expected the Square to be an accommodating location for the originals line because of its “eclectic” clientele and its historical ties.

“We really feel that Harvard’s rich history, matches Adidas’ history,” he said, adding that Adidas was founded in 1920 as a company that built shoes for professional athletes.

But the store’s last attempt to carve out a niche at Harvard flopped after just a year.

Adidas first moved in to its location on the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton Street in March 2000, but closed up shop in April 2001.

Barnes said that though the store closed then because “it wasn’t the right fit” with the Square, Adidas thought the intervening period has made potential customers more receptive.

“The Square has changed a lot over the past four years,” he said. “There are many more retailers and we feel that this is now the right market.”

He pointed to the apparel selection as practical, “lifestyle” pieces, touting a 1976 training shoe he said was regularly worn by Starsky and Hutch and reappeared in the recent movie.

On hand last night to explain how the originals merchandise is chosen was Jon Wexler, who is in charge of selecting Adidas footwear for the U.S. market.

“Basically we look in the vault and see what was good then and reintroduce it for now,” he said.