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ThirtyTwo + Crab Grab

One of snowboarding's most trusted brands teams up with a creative newcomer for a 2014 season collaboration

by Graham Hiemstra in Design on 17 January 2013

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Since 1995 ThirtyTwo has continually produced the lightest and some of the best-selling snowboard boots in the industry. Since 2012 Crab Grab has produced little pieces of foam that you stick on your board to improve foot and hand traction. While the two seem worlds apart the connection lies in the brands' dedication to snowboarding. Neither make running shoes nor football uniforms, both exist solely to improve your experience on snow, whether it be by keeping you comfortable or by reminding you that having fun should be the end goal of the activity. So, for 2014 the two brands have teamed up for an exclusive run of soft goods under the trusted ThirtyTwo title.

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Before getting into the collection a bit of background on Crab Grab is essential in understanding the design. Founded by Preston Strout—co-owner of legendary High Cascade Snowboard Camp—as a pretty humorous creative outlet, Crab Grab has become a fun reminder that snowboarding wasn't always about winning the Olympics. The goal is "to celebrate good style and encourage kids to get out there and just grab your snowboard and tweak it and have a good time," says Strout. "You don't have to be the world's best gymnast and snowboarder to have a good time."

On a recent trip out west with ThirtyTwo—named for the Fahrenheit freezing point at which snow is made possible—we were lucky enough to test the collaboration's lead products. The Crab Grab Lashed boot is an iteration of the brand's most iconic and best-selling boot, supported by a heat-moldable, dual density foam liner—we highly recommend heat molding, it does wonders for fit and endurance—and a two-piece outer shell articulating cuff to reduce heel life and general foot muscle exhaustion. Knowing very well that popular gimmicks like air bubbles become ineffective in cold weather, ThirtyTwo uses lightweight STI Evolution foam for sole cushioning in all temperatures, plus a new 1:1 Last that fits true to your shoe size.

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Other exciting parts of the collection include some low profile mittens, soft, supportive socks and even some co-branded garments, all infused with the playful spirit of Crab Grab. While you'll have to wait until next fall to get your claws on the collaboration, ThirtyTwo offers standard versions of each product in their 2013 line in shops now. And of course we encourage everyone to support Crab Grab and pick up some traction devices online now.

Studio images courtesy of ThirtyTwo, others by Graham Hiemstra

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