Customization is having a moment, and our raddest TV babes are all over the footwear trend. From Zoey Johnson in Grownishto Tokyo & Narobi in La Casa de Papel(a.k.a. Money Heist), the coolest of fly babes are rockin’ this trend on our screens.
We were hyped to sit down with sneaker visionary Nadine Hallak to chat about the customization trend and how you can invest in the look without breaking the bank with her 4KiX collection, sure to inject your personality even into the most boring shoes or trainers.
Your designs are very unique. Can you talk us through the design process?
Thank you! Unique is exactly what we’re going for. I wanted to create something that makes people feel good. Something that inspires people to be playful and have fun. I’ve always felt that what we wear represents aspects of our personalities and can influence our mood, so I loved the idea of creating something makes you look down at your feet and smile.
I’m very inspired by pop culture, different decades, and current trends. The designs are intended to be conversation-starters as well as a celebration of identity, so I wanted to use iconic imagery from various trends.
Are all the products created uniquely for your brand?
Yes! All characters are unique to 4KiX. We are all about being original, from the product itself (because it’s the only one of its kind) to the designs we create.
What gave you the idea for 4Kix?
I’ve always loved sneakers and fashion in general. Not in the fashionista sense, but for the art, flair, and color that goes into creating apparel and the sense of fun and excitement I feel while looking at and wearing it.
Yet, I think that often the fashion we admire the most can feel out of reach for the average shopper, be it due to price point, style, or size, and I wanted to create something inclusive to all. Something that brings the flair and quality of the high end at a price point that’s friendly.
Initially, I had been admiring a pair of canvas sneaks covered in glitter and pom-poms, but at $400 a pop, I just didn’t feel the purchase was justifiable for those materials. So I thought, “I bet I can make these” and began buying $10 white sneakers, customizing, and wearing them.
I was getting stopped in the street by men, women, and children, so I started looking into making shoes, which evolved into making accessories. We accessorize every other part of our wardrobe, so why not our shoes too?
The idea of creating an accessory that would give people options for customizing and elevating their sneaker style was not only original, but also a way to imbue the same sense of fun and excitement that ignites in me when I see something that captures my playful side. It’s jewelry for your feet. It’s “shoelry”!
Who is your ideal wearer?
While I think that my first collection is probably more skewed towards females, my ideal customer is everyone. Fashion is moving in that direction anyway. We are seeing the emergence of more and more genderless fashion lines among some of the biggest names in retail, such as Zara and Gucci.
With Zara, the genderless look comprises simple lines and fabrics, while Gucci’s styles are big, bold, and covered in crystals – but both have the same common goal: to embrace all lifestyles, empower, celebrate, and remove taboos. Ultimately, my ideal goal is to serve all customers, but I’d also like to be a platform for inclusivity, a celebration of identity, diversity, empowerment, and fun.
What is your greatest inspiration?
I’m inspired by using fun, laughter, and positivity as a means of empowering people and making them feel like they’re part of a community. I’m inspired by color, music, film, art, travel, and our hilarious emoji culture of fun-loving characters that spark connection, humor, and conversation. I’m also inspired by other brands and awed by their creativity.
How do you feel your 4Kix customers will customize their sneakers?
I predict they’ll choose whatever speaks to their personalities, be it something that relates to a decade they’re a fan of or something that encourages them to engage their playful side and use laughter to have some fun with their outfit. What could be better than feeling like you can click your heels and remember to smile, no matter what your day throws at you?
Where will we be able to buy the 4KiXproducts?
Will you be bringing any other accessories into the store?
I have a growing list of product ideas to develop and hopefully add in the future, including a shoe line and possibly even apparel, so watch this space.
What can we expect from 4KiX in 2020?
The product is truly one of a kind and it has taken a lot of development to get here, but given that an artist’s work is never truly done, you can expect that we’re going to continue to refine and perfect our first product, dropping new designs, and hopefully branching out into different shapes and reaching more audiences.
We’d also love to engage the public and get feedback on what they’d like to see and wear. We hope to be doing collaborations as well as custom orders for charities, sports teams, events, schools, and social topics.
Are there any other projects you’re working we should know about?
Currently, we have new designs in development, and might look into trialing at least one from our list of product ideas we wish to add in the future. We would love to keep you up to date with all of our upcoming news.
4KiX is a US-based unique accessories brand for sneakers and lace-up shoes that aims to inspire fun, spread happiness, and celebrate diversity in all those who wear it.
4KiX was founded by Nadine Hallak, a British-Lebanese citizen who currently resides between the U.S. and UK. Nadine’s background is in PR & marketing; while pursuing a life/health coaching certification, she began to play with crafts as a means of stress relief. There she found her true passion in using art and design as a means of positive empowerment for herself and others. 4KiX was born out of an effort to combine the two.
The brand name 4KiX is both a combination of the product’s function, as well as having personal significance to the founder. The number 4 represents Nadine’s immediate family comprised of four members, while KiX is a play on the expression “just for kicks”, which holds the double meaning “just for fun” as well as being a synonym for the word sneakers.
4KiX’s designs are inspired by pop culture, street fashion and street art, positive messages, music, cultural icons from different decades, and even the hashtag culture of today’s digital age. The result is a whimsical product that has the quality and flair of high fashion with a democratic price point designed to celebrate the wearer’s unique identity and put a little magic in their step.