A MISSION TO DISRUPT AN INDUSTRY RUN BY GIANTS
The story of our brand by Chris Nardi
This all started because of two problems, I couldn't keep my shoes clean and I was so indecisive that after a month of wearing a pair, I was ready to move onto the next. This was problematic because I didn't have the income and it was near impossible to fight the urge of sliding your foot into a brand new pair of sneakers. I KNOW YOU KNOW THAT FEELING.
So I decided to do something about it, I started my first business when I graduated college in 2015, hand painting and customizing sneakers with @dejesuscustomfootwear. It was awesome, I was doing what I loved and every day I got to touch and feel a brand new pair of sneakers. But then I hit a mental roadblock. The hardest part of that business for me was turning down people that couldn't afford the price point of our artwork and sneakers.
I thought to myself, Did I just start a business that catered to the people I envied as a kid but could never dress like? Am I not serving the exact customer I used to be? And that's when it dawned on me, I was catering to the elite. Most of my customers were NFL players, and as cool as it sounds, it wasn't fulfilling. I didn't want to serve those individuals, I wanted to serve who I was and am.
In 2017, I went back to the drawing board. I decided I truly wanted to create something that was able to reach more people and build an amazing community behind it.
In order to do this I focused on two things -
1. THE PRODUCT NEEDED TO BE AFFORDABLE
2. AND ANYONE WOULD BE ABLE TO INSTALL IT
In 2018, I made one of the hardest decisions I have had to make. I stepped away from not only Dejesus Custom Footwear, but a best friend, Dillon Dejesus, who I learned with, grew with, and ultimately did some pretty amazing things with.
Today, the Boosted Stripes community stands so strong at over 50,000 members in over 90 countries spanning from 8 year olds, all the way to 65 year olds. And I am so proud to say I communicate with almost every single one of them at one point or another.
Dejesus Custom Footwear has also continued to find massive success, accumulating over 140,000 YouTube subscribers, and Dillon and I still talk on a weekly basis putting our heads together to make brand deals with companies such as Adidas, Asics, and the NFL to name a few.
What you see now is 5 years of fighting the social norm, being laughed at, being told that we should get real jobs, being told we wouldn't be able to make a business out of custom shoes, and you want to know what? I couldn't be more confident every single day because I have you. And because of that I will never let you down. I PROMISE I will always have your back, I will always treat you with respect, and I will ALWAYS stand behind our products and this brand we are now building together.
With Gratitude and Love,