Parents teaching you how to tie your shoe is a vivid image in everyone's memory. What does it mean to tie a shoe? Why does it need to be tied? What does a shoe need to do to function as a shoe? If all a shoe needs to do is to enclose your foot, how differently can a shoe perform this task?
If, "to tie a shoe" can mean more than its literal phrase, can this mundane action be turned into something more meaningful, versatile or entertaining Can "tying a shoe" dictate how a shoe works, or become a shoe itself? Furthermore, can it alter the user's experience and behavior? Vice versa, can a user alter a shoe through this channel?
Wacky Pack explores the concept and possibilities of "tying a shoe" by investigating unusual construction and fastening methods. Each shoe in the collection creates a unique yet diverse interaction between the shoe and the user, through which to users are presented with a new level of improvisation and customization.
Wacky Pack is also influenced by the Japanese footwear brand Hender Scheme, especially its "Manual Industrial Products" collection, which creates renown sneaker models with manual, traditional shoemaking techniques. It had resulted in my fascination towards veg-tanned leather, and the combination and clashing between traditional leather shoemaking and contemporary, unorthodox concepts.
Another fascination of mine is metal hardware. Because of hardware's rich properties—shiny surface, smooth cold feeling, the weight that it adds onto the objects—to me they are as strong as the fabric or leather that they complement, or even stronger with the power to dictate the piece. Their presence will be emphasized in Wacky Pack, since it is an exploration of constructing and fastening.
Millennials will soon be (if not already) the major contributing consumer of fashion and luxury. They are after fresh, attention-grabbing concepts and ideas that end up becoming the values of the garments. (Do you behave more like a mailman when you wear that DHL shirt? What if your Louis Vuitton bag is made out of neon color plastic instead of leather? Do you pack things differently now that your suitcase is clear?).
Streetwear and even luxury brands are all playing up to these desires. But with Millennials' quick shift of attention, very soon a pure concept won't attract them anymore, and they would want something more—they want to be a part of the concept.