Foot Locker needs to raise its presence and model impression amongst girls—and designer and entrepreneur Melody Ehsani is stepping as much as the problem as the corporate’s new women’s creative director.
All through her profession working her personal retail model ME and collaborating on a number of Nike, Jordan, and Reebok sneakers, Ehsani has established herself as a trailblazer within the streetwear neighborhood, not only for her sharp eye for design, but additionally for centering her work on empowering girls.
“All people right here has a function, and everyone has a distinct car they use to serve humanity,” Ehsani says. “Design simply occurs to be the way in which I get there.”
In 2012, Ehsani turned the primary lady to personal a retailer on Fairfax Avenue, Los Angeles’s heralded buying strip, creating a stylish store, sure—but additionally a frequent hangout for native highschool women. Throughout the launch of certainly one of her Jordan collaborations, Ehsani realized folks have been utilizing bots to purchase sneakers so as to then resell them. Ehsani and her staff refunded hundreds of orders and spent two weeks promoting the sneakers on to actual prospects through Instagram.
Somebody lately requested Ehsani why she doesn’t promote her attire and jewellery at the next worth level. “They didn’t notice they have been making an attempt to separate me from what I do,” Ehsani says. “I’d make issues without spending a dime if I may. The neighborhood I’m impressed to serve are younger folks that may’t but afford [luxury items], however they nonetheless wish to be cool they usually nonetheless need one thing that was rigorously designed.”
And Ehsani is bringing that power to her new function at Foot Locker.
“It is a stunning alternative as a result of it permits me to make cool merchandise and democratize them by Foot Locker’s channels,” she says.
Amongst Ehsani’s tasks are designing attire capsule collections, curating Nike and Jordan merchandise, and rethinking advertising and marketing methods.
“There’s been a disconnect between what firms suppose girls need when it comes to sneakers and what they really need,” she says. “So I believe it’ll be precious having an precise lady there to assist transfer that.”
Ehsani is definitely the primary to occupy this function, which she applauds Foot Locker for creating.
“It’s letting me know that bigger firms are literally beginning to put money into girls versus simply paying lip service,” she says. “A whole lot of firms which are predominantly in male markets don’t actually put lots of capital behind investing of their women’s market, as a result of they don’t know if it’s price it. So the truth that [Foot Locker] even carved out this function they usually’re investing sources behind it’s sort of cool.”
That stated, Ehsani acknowledges the potential rising pains that would include a newly minted place.
“It’s tough being the primary of one thing as a result of there isn’t a path there. You’re within the woods with a machete creating one,” Ehsani says. “I’m not nervous. It’s extra like how far are they going to let me go together with this factor as a result of it’s the primary time for everybody. Both approach, it’s a privilege to be within the place, as a result of if I’m solely in a position to take action a lot, I do know whoever will come after me will likely be in a position to take action rather more.”