If you were struggling to find that perfectly personal Christmas gift, we recommend trying sneakers. The new Keds Collective program allows users to (literally) step into the role of shoe designer to create--and then sell--killer custom kicks.
While the fit from shoe-to-shoe will remain uniform, participants in Keds Collective will be able to handpick all the trim, embellishments, and design details that go into their sneaker creations, even uploading patterns and graphics directly from their computer. Designers then have the option of buying the shoes at wholesale price and reselling them in an online shop set up through the Keds website.
Because it costs more to produce a custom shoe, Keds doesn't stand to gain much from its Collective in terms of profit: the marketing riches, however, could be extraordinary. "People feel much more connected to the brand because they're part of the advertising, in reality," says Darren Paul, co-founder of the Night Agency, a social media/marketing consulting group that worked on the Keds Collective. [WSJ] We fully anticipate all our favorite blogs producing custom Keds shops in time for the holidays, and actually, we're kind of stoked. Exclusive Thread sneaks, anyone?