Canvas sneakers have always been the go-to when it comes to laid-back comfort and style. Looking good while feeling good is the reason why people don their Keds, Vans and Converse sneakers. But there’s a new kid on the block. Read on to find out more about the canvas shoes that has a special twist to their brand—-they share artists’ stories from all over the world….
The reason why I was able to learn about this new brand is because of a writing assignment for Inquirer 2BU (Lifestyle Section). The focus was supposed to be more about Jayson Atienza, one of the artists in Bucketfeet’s vast network. But more on that, as I am getting way ahead of myself. Haha.
Bucketfeet shoes are basically Artist Designed Footwear. Amply so as their company’s mission is to “connect people through art”. The company began with the meeting of two strangers traveling through Argentina– Raaja Nemani, a travelling backpacker and Aaron Firestein, a street artist. As is with the case of traveling, you get a bit of something from every person, and Raaja scored an original designed blank canvas sneakers from Aaron.
As Raaja traveled across six continents, his shoes became the icebreaker that launched conversations with people from all over the world. With this phenomenon, Raaja asked Aaron to collaborate on building “a brand committed to collaborating with artists”.
Bucketfeet’s artist network boasts of working with over 12,000 artists from 100 countries. This pool of artists consist of painters, graphic designers, graffiti writers, street artists, photographers, etc. etc. Everyone who has a story to tell that wants to share it through the medium of canvas shoes is welcome to take part in the mission of connecting people through art.
I visited their pop up store in Alabang Town Center, and I was plenty amazed by the store set up. It’s definitely one of the most unique styles of visual merchandising as they don’t just prop shoes on racks and rows. Rather, they treat each footwear as if they’re a piece of art on display at a gallery. The set up is visually appealing and quite creative, as it makes checking out each shoe an artistic pursuit.
Art is fun but more often than not, there is always a meaning/story behind each piece. It is after all, how artists express themselves best. Each shoe in the store is displayed with their own space, artwork name and the name and location of the artist who made it. In some special cases, if they’re available, they also have description cards to go along with the shoe. These description cards contain a short interview with the artist who designed it, typically detailing the history and meaning of their design.
Now back to the original reason as to why I was there in the first place…
I was set to interview and write a feature on one of Bucketfeet’s artists– Jayson Atienza.
The delightful thing about it is that Jayson happens to be a Filipino! An even better fact about him is that he had not a single diva bone in his body, which is quite strange considering I got to interview him and pick his brain, and I conclude that he is one of the most inspiring people I’ve ever met.
Jayson Atienza was at Alabang Town Center that day to live paint a mural for the Bucketfeet pop up store. It was SCORCHING HOT outside and yet he continued to paint without any complaint.
I’ve written a separate post on Jayson, because I wanted to include him in my lost of “Beautiful Soles”. You can learn more about him here: Click here to read about Jayson Atienza.
On top of meeting the great Jayson Atienza, I was also able to meet Mr. Gifford Chu, the President of Bucketfeet Philippines. I didn’t even realize that he was the President because he was clad in such a casual manner, sporting Bucketfeet shoes of course! He was super nice and was clearly passionate about what Bucketfeet stood for. He and his brother brought the brand to the country because they believed in what Bucketfeet wanted to achieve. That and because he believes that the brand’s stylish and VERY comfortable array of footwear would appeal to the current young generation that’s all about expressing themselves.
I was super kilig because I didn’t expect Mr. Chu to give me a free pair of shoes—let alone TWO. It took me a while to choose because all of the designs are so beautiful!! The staff are all VERY friendly and accommodating and actually have great artistic comments on the shoes’ designs. From trying out a gajillion pairs, I can definitely assure you that even if it’s a lace-tie or a slip-on, all pairs from Bucketfeet are crazy comfy! They have these bubbles inside the shoe that cushion your feet and make it feel like you’re walking on customized footwear. I don’t know if it’s just me, but whenever I’m wearing my Bucketfeet pairs, I feel like the shoes are massaging me. HAHA. :)
I got the DELTA pair and the GEOLACE pair, and they are now two of my FAVORITE pair of shoes EVER. I even got to use the DELTA during Sinulog, which was perfect cause the print is so festive and fun. My GEOLACE on the other hand is used more often to complete my outfits because of it’s fun twist on top of its neutral, easy-to-pair colors. I even get to wear it on nights out because it doesn’t look like JUST casual sneaks. For the comfort side, on any occasion that I wear these two pairs, I am always comfy cause even if I walk a lot or dance the day away, my feet remain happy. As for the stylish side, I never fail to get compliments on my shoes whenever I sport my DELTAs and GEOLACEs. So much loooooooove for my Bucketfeet babies! :)
At present, you can get your very own Bucketfeet pair at Glorietta 3, Alabang Town Center, Trinoma and U.P. Town Center. You can check Bucketfeet Philippines’ online presence here:
With such a beautiful message behind the brand and a strong conviction of continuous support for the artists of the world, Bucketfeet is one brand that is by the people and for the people. Their origins, simple as it may, also inspires. Always remember.. ANYONE you met on the road could be someone that could help you change the world!