“It was a tiny store in a low-end galleria” says Max Schiller of the first Acne store which opened in Stockholm in 2003. Since then, both Acne and Schiller have come a long way. Since beginning on that very shop floor, Schiller has been integral to setting up the brand’s Parisian base and eventually began designing for their menswear line in 2009. In 2012, Schiller left Acne to start Eytys with Jonathan Hirschfeld, one of his oldest friends who was working in finance at the time. Even before the brand's official launch, Eytys, which retails at a reasonable $150 for canvas and $230 for leather and suede, was picked up by high-end stores such as Colette, Opening Ceremony, and Dover Street Market. We caught Schiller on a plane (with WiFi), traveling to London’s Dover Street Market, to set up an Eytys in-store installation.
How was this idea born?
Max Schiller Jonathan and I sat in front of our computers at our very different offices and sent links to each other. Via Tumblr and all other current channels of inspiration, we discovered so many creative talents (both young/unknown and more established). We wanted to create a platform through which we could interact/approach and do exciting projects with these people. We love sneakers and felt that it was the perfect tool/platform for this. The idea took shape during an extremely intense holiday in Tokyo.
How did you come up with the name, and what does it mean?
MS 80's spelled with Y's to enhance Generation Y. It's the first generation to grow up with the internet; always having access to something to read, play, watch, click, listen to… this has created an entire generation of multidisciplinary creativity… Eytys is a celebration to that.
How did you meet Jonathan and how’d you end up partnering up?
MS We first met as thirteen year olds, outside a party in our neighborhood in Stockholm. We could't get in and were the only ones standing outside in the cold. We started talking and decided to go to for BigMac's instead. Our business partnership started in high-school when we designed clothes with the school logo that we sold to our school-mates. Since then we always talked about doing something together. The design is really clean and minimal.
If you could choose any person living or dead to wear your shoes who would it be?
MS Keith Haring. He was my idol when I was 10 and my room was wallpapered with his posters... I was a weird kid.
If you had to describe Eytys in three words what would they be?
MS Unisex. Interactions. Chutzpah.
IMAGES COURTESY OF EYTYS