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Keds Collective promotes entrepreneurial spirit
Dec '09
Keds, a division of Collective Brands Performance and Lifestyle Group, announced the next evolution in the iconic American brand's history with the launch of the Keds Collective. Inspired by the brand's vision of creative freedom and individual style, this new online community, housed, brings together designers, cutting-edge artists, musicians, other creative individuals, and the general public, giving them an easy-to-use, robust online design capability to express their creativity through unique, custom designs on the Keds Champion the original sneaker.

Keds Collective is a wholly new digital forum that integrates today's social media capabilities with leading-edge online shoe design capabilities and e-commerce. The end result is a new integrated online model dedicated to the creative freedom that is Keds America's blank canvas and the original sneaker. Keds Collective designers design online, share their designs with others online, and can set up an e-store to market and sell their designs to others creating a first-ever electronic business model to design, market and sell shoes. Keds Collective designers will be featured and promoted in the Keds online marketing campaign.

"Keds stands for creative freedom and our iconic Champion sneaker, the world's first sneaker, is America's blank canvas," said Kristin Kohler Burrows, President of Keds. "In conjunction with this brand philosophy, we have created Keds Collective, a place where fashion, commerce and creativity converge. It's a new online model dedicated to the creative freedom of Keds and an inspiring and fun site offering aspiring designers and creative-minded people an opportunity to design their own shoes and start their own businesses selling their unique styles online at keds.com."

The Keds Collective community includes emerging and established artists selected from across creative disciplines. The initial fall 2009 Keds Collective group features 18 members -- and growing -- from music, design, art and fashion. Highlighted members include Saturday Night Live Stylist and costume designer, Jeriana San Juan, and Ben Warwas, designer of his eponymous clothing label, among others.

Keds will continue to grow this community and feature fresh new talent on the Keds Collective website with cross-promotion on Facebook and Twitter. New Keds Collective members will be announced on an ongoing basis and will include both emerging talent and members of the general public. Keds will be creating an online application process for those wishing to become Keds Collective designers to submit their design, along with a biography and personal video explaining why they should be a part of the Keds Collective community.

Keds Collective designers use the Keds Custom design tool and the iconic Champion as their own "blank canvas" upon which they can upload their own artwork, graphics and text instantly, or utilize pre-populated imagery available at the site. When applying text, consumers can select from up to 100 fonts and choose any color.

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