images courtesy Style Bubble and Anastasia Radevich
The most important part of enduring was not the fear of failure or even fiscal loss, as much as the question of what in the hell would we do, or be, if this company we envisioned didn’t grow from a sapling? Our biggest cost is always opportunity – not the cash in our hand or the shoes on our feet, but that potential of what we can become...
We had become our company, and it had become us. And if there was no opportunity anymore, if we had lost it, who were we? And could we live with that?
My father’s simple wisdom came in loud and clear, "don’t be like that monkey with his fist stuck in the tree hole, holding onto the banana. That monkey won’t let go, and that’s how monkeys get caught.”
So we let go. By accepting that no matter the outcome we weren’t going to let anything rob us of our joy, a funny thing happened … it was the exact fuel we needed. By releasing ourselves, letting go of this "success" thing and accepting the possibility of failure, we were able to see the light again. Just after the new year, we put down the winter woes and happily jumped heels-first into 2014, updating the site so we could launch, for real.
Which brings us to today. You may (or may not) notice the difference in the experience on the Market, and you may not take the time to, and that’s OK. We've found people spend a large chunk of their time seeking/looking at beautiful shoes, while simultaneously discovering new paths to shoe inspiration, on Bootleg Market. And these devoted footwear folks have needed a single place online to share in a beautiful shoe experience for a long time. We are very happily here to serve as the captains of this new world ... and it is growing.
And since it is not yet abundantly clear what
Bootleg Market does (sometimes), here’s the gist:
You can buy and sell with your friends, as well as directly from brands + boutiques. You can collect dream shoes (we call it "obsess") and follow friends (aka "stalk" your favorite shoe people) through your own personal online closet. So it acts like eBay, minus the yucky hassle/lowballing/bidding, and it looks like the most beautiful shoe magazine, a la our Newsprint.
We realize what it doesn’t do, and what it isn’t, and we promise we're slowly evolving every day to make the site even easier (and fun!) for you to use. Make sure you play with the search engine - it's pretty darn fun, as we have editorialized it, enticing you into things you never thought you'd find in a shoe site... read more about our search update here.