Life is too short to be so stressed and serious. GLUE speaks to the founders of ChattyFeet, Gil Kahana and Humberto De Sousa, who are on a mission to delight sock-wearers with their uplifting collection. Find your alter egos from Prof Brian Sox to Don Cottone.
Q. What is the inspiration behind ChattyFeet? How will the Kickstarter fundraising help this project?
We love funny moments, especially the rare ones you share with your close friends. A few years ago we had a really nice, cosy gathering with friends and suddenly one of us lifted his feet in the air and said ‘What if my socks could talk?’… That’s how it all started! We really wanted to create something that would encourage people to embrace their inner child as an antidote to the seriousness of modern life. The reaction to our first collection was really great and many people told us that they loved our product.
We decided to take our business to the next step but needed some help with funding. We created our Kickstarter project to help us to produce our second collection. If we make it, we will bring out eight new designs in quantities large enough to start working with high-street retailers.
Please help us by visiting ChattyFeet project and if you love what we do, share it with your friends!
Q. There is a lot of creativity involved this project. How do you choose the collaborative designers and sock puppet characters for ChattyFeet?
Yes, ChattyFeet is all about celebrating design and performance together. One of the most exciting things about our brand is that it allows us to work with our friends and other talented designers to create new characters. We look for designers with a sense of humour and original style.
All our characters are expressive and ready for action the moment you take off your shoes! As more characters come to life, we are learning what works best and combining the findings in our brief.
It is critical for us that each designer understands our brand and can think beyond their own style. During the progress, we consider our friends’ feedback, for example, Don Cottone came to life because one of our friends who is an academic said he wouldn’t be able to wear our colourful socks. So we asked his girlfriend to come up with a black sock design – that’s how the Sock-Father was born! The most important thing for us with our characters is that they bring a smile to everyone who sees them and encourage people to express themselves using sock-puppet theatre.
Q. “As adults we have noticed that life is not as fun as we were promised. We used to laugh more and asked ourselves where did the fun go.” I agree with your statement here. Do you think adults are becoming too serious?
Adults have to deal with lots of stressful situations and make ends meet. We believe that our society needs a heathy balance between effort and joy.
When we look around, we feel that there is too much seriousness and not enough fun as you grow older. There is a problem with our values- our gross national happiness (GNH) should be as important as gross domestic product (GDP). Being child-like at times makes us happier and helps to deal with the more serious parts of life.
Our socks respect the delicate balance between work and leisure – they can’t be seen when inside your shoes but with your close friends or at home it is the perfect opportunity to show your ChattyFeet for a moment of shared laughter!
Q. ChattyFeet socks can give the wearer an excuse to get silly and say everything that been bottling up with the socks. Do you think it might save the NHS a lot of money in stress counselling?
ChattyFeet is a brand that encourages self-expression and will hopefully bring more laughter and fun into our busy lives. There are lots of health benefits associated with laughter and one of them is reducing stress. We hope that apart from being a quirky and fun sock brand, ChattyFeet will also help people to unwind and bring out the child inside them. It would be amazing if ChattyFeet were to become a phenomenon that contributes to people’s health – it is a good aspiration to have- now we just have to bring our ChattyFeet vision to everyone around the globe!
Q. Renowned anthropologist Pierre Bordieu said that the type of socks we wear can determine the partners we get in life. What is ChattyFeet’s opinion on this?
That is a great story that we were not aware of! Fashion in general says a lot about who we are. When we started ChattyFeet, we did a lot of research about how people feel about expressing themselves with fashion. One of our findings was that sometimes even wearing one unique fashion garment such as funky socks is enough as a personal statement…
Speaking about your potential partner, you can choose one of our characters based on what you are looking for, for example, Prof. Brian Sox for science lovers or Miko for an adventurous spirit!
Q. Will we see something like Sir Bradley Wiggly sock character for cycling fans in the near future? Cyclists really love their funky socks.
We would like our collection to be ever growing and a cyclist character sounds like a good idea! It would be funny to see a video of a cyclist with our character socks!
We will continue to read your blog to get inspiration!