Shoes of Prey co-founder Jodie Fox is always thinking about shoes. From ankle straps to heel heights and fastener types, Fox says creating the perfect pair is her obsession — and it should be yours, too.
It was her frustration with not finding exactly what she wanted in a shoe that inspired the Australia native and her co-founders to start Shoes of Prey — a multichannel retail brand that enables shoppers to design their own shoes online — in 2009.
“I couldn’t find what I wanted,” Fox told FN during her press pop-up event in New York City on May 13. “I was recognizing that I had a problem with that, and when we started testing our idea, we received a unanimous ‘yes’ from women.”
Fox said her co-founders, Michael Fox and Mike Knapp, took on the challenge of building their technology in-house “because nobody has off-the-shelf software to help you to show people how to design their own shoes.” They even opened two factories in China to get the job done.
Today, Shoes of Prey allows consumers to design their own shoes, in sizes ranging from 2.5 to 15 (U.S.) in a multitude of heights, colors, textures and patterns. The technology even enables shoppers to make adjustments for anything from narrow feet to uncomfortable bunions.
“It’s not just about getting the style you want, but also creating something that you can feel good wearing all day long,” said Fox. “So I really believe in that moment of stepping out the door and feeling awesome because the shoe is beautiful and you feel comfortable.”
While FN had the customization innovator on hand, we had to get her to answer our three favorite questions.
Check it out.
1. How many pairs do you personally own?
“Hundreds! I actually don’t know the exact count because my mother and my sister are the same size as me and a couple of my girlfriends are, too, so shoes go in and out of my closet without me knowing. [The number] is probably closer to a thousand than to 100.”
2. Are you a heel or a flat?
“I am either totally flat or above four inches and nothing less. It’s either skyscraper or totally flat.”
3. If you were a shoe, what shoe would you be?
“I would be a stacked heel with a single strap across the toe and a single strap around the ankle. I would be in croc embossed patent leather with gold piping.”