Created out of a necessity of a real sneaker fan, BORN//RAISED came to be in 2013. Chung Wai Cheung, the brand’s founder, shared with us about what does BORN//RAISED really mean, to him and to all of us. The ideas behind the new collection, the design process and the future of footwear were some of the other topics discussed. Read it all below.
What can you share about the story behind the establishment of Born//Raised?
I have always been a big sneaker enthusiast, but felt something was missing on the market. I wanted a clean sneaker, but without paying a fortune. I wanted to make good quality shoes that could fit any feet.
These thoughts were the beginning of the BORN//RAISED adventure in March 2013.
What about the brand's name?
BORN//RAISED. The name says it all. BORN//RAISED for me means finding that pair of shoes that you feel comfortable with. That pair you always pick out every time you stand in front of the mirror. When you put them on, you feel born again and ready to conquer the world! These shoes raises you - making you the best you can be.
'Born in Blue' is the title of your latest Spring/Summer 15 collection – was there a main idea that led to its creation, a common assertion?
After the first season, I felt like BORN//RAISED was missing something. Something that would give the Brand the final touch. Something that could remind people of the shoes. So this is where I came up with the blue color on the outsole, logo on the shoeboxes etc. BORN IN BLUE was perfect for this.
Regarding the brand's production process, can you shed some light about it?
The production process is all about trust. Trusting the Suppliers and rely on them. They are the key factor to a brand's success. It all starts from drawing to sourcing to sampling. This is a three month process that is quite exciting. Design is one thing, but the development is the hardest part. The supplier has to have your mindset to get the result of what is in your mind.
What about the design? How hard is it to find the rightful balance between creativity, innovation?
Design is the easy part. Being creatived is also easy, the hard thing is to be creative and still make a product and design that can SELL. It's difficult to be innovative on shoe designs, because almost everything has been done once or twice. If you make something new, its almost impossible to sell if your name isn't Jeremy Scott or Rick Owens.
Is in fact footwear the most important part of everyone's apparel?
Footwear IS the most important clothing piece in your wardrope. It can save everything. You can wear bad clothes, but the right pair of shoes can save the entire outfit. But a bad pair of sneakers can't make up for nice/expensive clothes.
How do you foresee the future of footwear?
I believe that everything will be more clean and classic. Runners will still be popular, but we will see more classic styles are coming back, such as Stan Smith, Superstar, Campus etc. All oldschool classic silhouettes will be on everything people minds the next couple of years. The classics, sophisticated and timeless design are always a winner - just like BORN//RAISED!
What about Born//Raised upcoming collections – what can you tell us about it?
I can't tell you much, but I can say the range will be bigger, and better. Wait and see - the journey has just begun!
Check out our complete BORN//RAISED selection here.