One local shoe designer is not loafing around.
Studio B was recently visited by a Boyertown High School graduate who has launched his own business and is now in the process of looking towards the future.
Student, artist, and entrepreneur Kevin Ostromecki was invited to speak at the studio’s ‘Art-ful Conversations a.k.a. Cheap Date Nights’ series by Jane Stahl and Robert Wood on Friday, Oct. 4.
Altix Clothing, Ostromecki’s clothing and shoe company which he created and developed, was the focus of the night’s conversation. Visitors were ready and eager to hear about the process that this young man has gone through to get to where he is today. He began the night by explaining the ‘what,’ and ended with ‘what’s next.’
Ostromecki himself, through his company, custom designs blank shoes with fabric markers.
“The shoes are designed for you. Once I make them, I ship them right away,” said Ostromecki, explaining to the group why he didn’t have a pair of designed shoes on display.
Many asked how long it takes to design the shoes. He says it varies depending on the customer’s request. The more specific the request—the more labor intensive it can be.
In regards to the reasons why he’s doing what he’s doing, Ostomecki said, “I wanted to get my purpose out there—do something good with my art.”
A percentage of the proceeds from his shoes, coined ‘Hero Shoes,’ goes towards the Potter’s House of Guatemala. These funds will benefit the lives of the people in Guatemala City who depend on the garbage dump for survival. Otromecki stated that he has visited Guatemala twice, something he describes as a life-changing experience.
Altix Clothing is now an official partner with the Potter’s House organization.
“Altix happened for the good to transpire. Hero shoes: you are a hero once you purchase them,” said Ostromecki. “I want to do good—that’s the point of it. This is hope.”
As far as the business end, Ostromecki says he’s learning as he goes. Currently, Altix Clothing is in the process of reaching out to retailers.
Ostromecki shared the future of Altix Clothing: an Altix design shoes lab. He explained this would be a store with lab stations set up featuring a touch pad ordering system and hired graphic artists. The site will seek to be interactive with orders being completed live by designers. Ostromecki describes his brand to be exclusive and individualized.
It’s so exclusive, in fact, that Ostromecki declined the chance to appear on ABC’s Shark Tank due to risk of losing varied percentages of rights and ownership.
What originally began by designing shoes in high school for friends has now become a worldwide cause.
According to Ostromecki, he has designed more than 300 pairs of shoes since that first pair in high school.
Ostromecki is currently a sophomore at Albright College as a graphic design major with a duel major in business.