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BOTH: an interview with the designers

Both' collection!

We met Both’s designers , a brand-new sneakers brand with a strong fashion impact whose creations are easy recognizable for the materials they use: rubber cracks and skin-washed.

Julian: “How did it start and what’s the inspiration behind your collections?”

Both: “Both is a footwear brand exploring the endless possibilities of one material: rubber. Since 2014 a selection of international collaborators have helped bring our project to life, first through establishing a production base and identifying the market, then in 2016 with the opening of a creative studio and brand headquarter in Paris. We’re looking to fill a gap in the market for high quality, minimal, durable footwear with a strong identity. We launched our first collection for SS17. Our aim is to offer a variety of timeless classics with a twist, we focus on clean shapes and strong forms highlighting balance between simplicity and ingenuity.”

Julian: “What about the idea to match rubber and leather?”

Both: “We use vulcanizing technique to create our shoes. Vulcanization is the classic way to create a sneaker, e.g. Converse All-Stars or Vans are vulcanized. Basically you fuse a rubber sole to a shoe upper by “cooking” it in a high temperature oven. Our design team is deeply rooted in the footwear industry and therefore it felt very natural to use our own expertise in a way that nobody else did before. We develop this further by applying rubber also on upper parts and experiment with it.”

Julian: “You are a sneakers’ designer: how would you define the word “sneakers”?”

Both: “If you take a look in the dictionary “sneakers” are shoes primarly designed for sports but it goes far beyond that. While sports play certainly still a major role in the world of sneakers, nowadays people wear them on all occasions and in everyway possible. People wear sneakers in their holiday with a boardshort, at parties with a fancy outfit or as business attire combined with a suit; Sneakers have become a cultural icon and are much more than just a shoe.”

Julian: “What makes a good pair of shoes?”

Both: “There are several aspects which you need to pay attention to to create a good pair of shoes. Eg. quality, design and comfort are of course very important. For us, simply put, the utmost goal is that people want to wear our shoes. “

Julian: “Activewear and sportswear are some of the most important trends of these years. Do you believe they will be also trends of the future?”

Both: “The modern society we live in experiences a rapid change and shift in culture. Gender lines get blurry, old people feel younger and want to look like it, business attire is less formal. People don’t only work from 9 to 5 behind their desk but attend meetings at the cool coffeeshop next door. All this creates a different demand and need for clothing than 20,30 years ago. Therefore the so called activewear and sportswear trend was inevitable and will certainly not lose its significance.”