Have you ever wondered what causes a trend-setting product to become so popular? Or better yet, how to identify trend-setters before they take-off in popularity? Well you may be reading about one such product now, and here’s why. The world of crowdfunding is undergoing a similar burst in popularity. However, the demographics served by crowdfunding are skewed to the early adopters, DIYers, entrepreneurs, and idea sharers. So, what does that mean? It means that the crowdfunding community is made up of mavens—an important piece in the viral effect. If you have read Malcom Gladwell’s The Tipping Point then you understand what I am referring to. If not, then you can bring yourself up-to-speed with this Wikipedia version.
Sara Gulyas—a product designer specializing in leather—is the creator of the above-mentioned product and trend-setting hopeful. The product is Pikkpack.
Pikkpack—a do-it-yourself shoe—is flat-packed to your home ready for assembly. The sole is made of durable lightweight cowhide, while the shoe is of flexible and breathable water buffalo leather. The shoe is so conforming and light that traversing around town feels as though you are barefoot without the discomfort of being so. Over time, the leather will continue to mold around your feet to provide the custom fit that only broken-in leather can provide. Pikkpack also comes with a bit of flare and personal attitude. The shoe literally comes together with a thick cotton shoelace that stitches the shoe together. The laces are customizable in a variety of colors from vivacious sweet-magenta to soothing grass-green to a steely reflective Sea-blue.
The Pikkpack is inspired by the traditional Hungarian shoe, Bocskor (BOTCH-CORE). “The shoe is quite ugly but I want to bring it back into style”, said an excited Gulyas. “I love to design accessories and I find designing shoes special—I am very enthused with it.” Gulyas thoroughly enjoys bringing 2D designs to their 3D equivalent. Her origami shoe designs gathered praise and will be featured in the 2015 shoe calendar in New York City.
Sara Gulyas lives in Budapest, Hungary and was introduced to crowdfunding while traveling in San Francisco, CA. She commented that starting a business in the United States is far easier than to do so in her native Hungary. Crowfunding, and specifically Kickstarter, just made it that much easier. Gulyas hopes to garner more support from the American market for her Kickstarter campaign. As of last week, 40% of her pledges came from Hungary while the other 60% was spread between Europe, Japan, and other countries including the US.
Sara Gulyas is very close to reaching her campaign goal on this POPing entrepreneurial shoe design that honors Hungarian heritage. So you tell me, will the Pikkpack begin a new trend?