Imagine walking into your favorite store in search of a fashionable new style to add to your wardrobe, but after doing a once over, it seems that your go-to shop has let you down. Out of the countless racks and stocked shelves of clothing and accessories, nothing is sparking an interest and you leave empty handed and frustrated. You may even wish that you could design that sought-after item yourself. We’ve all had moments like this, but the good news is that you no longer have to wish that you could create the style of your dreams — with these simple tools, you can play designer from the comfort of your dorm room.
Shoes of Prey
This 6-year-old footwear company allows you to create the shoes you’ve always wanted, but could never find in stores. Specializing in everything from flats to boots, Shoes of Prey allows users to either customize one of their existing designs or start from scratch and build their own pair of shoes. Their easy design interface first prompts you to choose a style, which includes tall, mid-calf and ankle boots, stilettos, and pointed-toe flats. After selecting a style, users can select their shoe size, additional style features (like open toes for heels or elastic backs on boots), heel height, material, color and embellishments. What results is a custom shoe that fits all of your style needs. While nothing can beat the convenience of Shoes of Prey, custom footwear tends to be a bit pricey, with base styles (styles not yet designed) starting at $129. But don’t be discouraged: Shoes of Prey offers free shipping to most of the United States, so what you spend on your custom kicks you can save on shipping.
If you’re willing to splurge even more for a custom design, Mon Purse is sure to provide the luxury with style to match. Offering men’s and women’s leather goods, Mon Purse lives by the statement, “Designed by you, made in Europe and worn around the world.” While Mon Purse offers ready-made products, such as tote bags, messenger bags, laptop cases and wallets, the online retailer also gives users the chance to design their own styles, though these are reserved to handbag silhouettes only. Similar to Shoes of Prey, Mon Purse allows you to choose the size, color and metal hardware of your purse. They even give you a chance to leave your mark on your new handbag with a monogram. All of this style comes at a price, however, with the cheapest customizable option — a leather pouch — clocking in at $65, while a customizable tote bag will cost (at least) $480.
If you’d rather put your newfound design abilities into something a little more casual, there’s no better way to do so than by participating in one of the biggest trends: athleisure. Largely associated with the sporty-casual trend, Adidas has an online design lab called “miadidas” that allows users to create footwear that will fit into their active, yet stylish, lives. Shoppers can choose from the ever-popular Stan Smith silhouette, running styles, basketball sneakers and even the comfy Adidas slides, only to then decide everything from the color of the laces right down to the shade of the sole. Once you settle on the style you like, you’ll be able to have your custom shoes shipped free to campus, as Adidas offers free shipping on all custom products. Likely the most affordable of the custom outfitters, customizable Adidas styles start at $65 for slides and at least $170 for MI D Rose 7 Basketball shoes.
The next time your favorite store lets you down, just remember that you have the power to design exactly what you’ve been looking for — it’s only a click away.