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April 30, 2015

A year ago, designers took a hit of nostalgia when they debuted their fall/winter 2014 collections with Star Wars–themed clothing. The Mulleavy sisters of Rodarte closed with a series of Star Wars-inspired gowns printed with Death Star, Yoda, Luke Skywalker, and C-3PO, while Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi of Preen broadcasted their affinity for Star Wars with Darth Vadar–printed blouses. And even though the newest chapter in the sci-fi saga—Star Wars: Episode VII—The Force Awakens—isn't slated to hit theaters until mid-December, the craze for all things Star Wars is at an all-time high.

Case in point: the launch of limited-edition Star Wars x Ugg footwear featuring the infamous villain Darth Vader. The eight-piece collection (priced between $100 and $225; available at uggaustralia.com on May 4) features all the familiar Ugg silhouettes, like the original plush boots and the padded moccasin slippers, but they're treated with darker finishings—sleek black leather in place of soft suede and galactic piping instead of neutrals.

$100-$225; uggaustralia.com

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An Ugg and Star Wars collaboration may seem like an unlikely union at first, but after we chatted with Leah Larson, the VP and creative director of the footwear brand, we couldn't imagine a more perfect partnership. Read on to to learn about how the collection came to be, the design process, and future Ugg x Star Wars pieces.

What made you decide to partner with Star Wars?
We loved the idea of two iconic brands coming together in a new, unexpected way. Both Ugg and Star Wars have deep-rooted fan bases and followings that span several decades. In a lot of ways the decision came about organically. Many of us in the Ugg office have had a love affair with the original Star Wars trilogy since our childhoods.

Tell us about the design process. Why Darth Vader? What elements did you want to incorporate?
We wanted to pay homage to the most beloved and iconic Star Wars characters. These characters have been a part of our lives for decades and this gave us the opportunity to honor them. The Darth Vader collection is inspired by the villain’s wardrobe and ominous characteristics. It was important to us not to take the design too literally, but to highlight details throughout the boot so that our Ugg customer can wear every day and true Star Wars fans would appreciate and cherish for years to come. You’ll notice, the piping on the boots look like the stars of a galaxy and each style is numbered and features an inner woven label with Darth quotes like, 'If you only knew the power of the dark side.'

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What do you hope to achieve with this collaboration?
When you bring two brands together that have such loyal and passionate fans, the result is something really special. We had so much fun with this collaboration and hope anyone who gets their hands on a pair feels the same. Whether it is for yourself, the man in your life or your kids, the boots and slippers stay true to our brand promise and feel like nothing else.

Will you introduce other Star Wars-inspired Ugg boots, like R2D2?
We will be rolling out additional collections leading up to the Star Wars VII premiere in December! Each collection will be inspired by a different character. We’re all insanely excited about it but I have to remain tight-lipped for now—stay tuned!

The collection will be up for grabs starting May 4 at uggaustralia.com.

PHOTOS: May the Force Be with You: Fashion for the Star Wars Fanatic

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