Back in October, we were thrilled see Thomas and Kasper, the founders of ARKK Copenhagen, featured in issue #36 of Sneakers Magazine. For their exclusive interview and profile on Thomas and Kasper, Sneakers went for the deep cuts - interviewing the founders about the very beginnings of ARKK, about daring to take a leap into unknown territory, about how they run the Copenhagen-based office, and about what exactly makes up the ARKK design DNA.
Below are some outtakes from the Sneakers Mag Q&A with Thomas and Kasper. You can read a longer, more in-depth version of the interview here or cop the latest issue of the mag to read the full profile.
SM: Let’s take a look back at the origins of ARKK. How did you guys come up with the initial idea to start a brand and what did you feel was missing in the industry?
T&K: Thomas: It was the summer of 2014 when Kasper approached me at a mutual friends’ birthday party, I clearly remember sitting in a sofa and Kasper coming over and telling me that we should start a sneaker brand. My first question was obviously “Why?” and then he asked me what I would buy if I was to buy a pair of sneakers. “adidas or Nike. Or perhaps a pair of Puma Suede, but those are the only brands I’d consider,” to which he replied: “Exactly. And that’s why we should start a Danish sneaker brand that focuses on other values and with another background than the existing players.” From that point, it all went pretty fast – we quickly agreed that the Scandinavian heritage with our design history, architectural scene, simplicity and good quality should be our brand DNA. We wanted to take all those things and put them into a sneaker brand and create a brand that had another background than all the other brands out there. And that’s how it all began.
SM: As you just mentioned the design aspect – what makes up your individual design DNA?
T&K: We are clean and simple. That’s our mantra when we design and it’s our tagline on Instagram – everything we do has this Scandinavian touch to it and that’s our USP. We offer the market and the consumer something else – the colors we use are more grayed, the silhouettes are cleaner and when we use contrasting colors it’s for small details. We believe we offer the market something else, something that wasn’t there before us.
SM: Do you have a specific plan for the future of ARKK as a brand?
T&K: Our overall goal is to be in the best sneaker- and fashion stores all over the world. We obviously want a healthy company and to be able to pay our employees a good salary, but our goals are not defined by economic targets, but more about influencing the sneaker market and leave our mark on the industry. We would love to inspire and influence the fashion and sneaker trends and culture and to be respected for what we do and for the realness in what we do. We want to be one of the 10 most influential sneaker brands worldwide.