Keeping Classic Sneakers Fresh With Chicago’s Teen Cobbler


(whimsical music) – When I tell people I fix shoes, they kind of laugh, they’re like, oh, but I thought this trade was dead. And I sometimes feel offended like nah, it’s not. I’m trying to rise it up, I’m gonna bring it up. I have a phrase called turn your beaters into heaters. A lot of people beat up their shoes, and I can make it look into some fresh kicks, I can make them look brand new. Like wow, you can actually do this. Yeah, I can bring your shoes back to life, I’m Fix Your Kicks, that’s what I do, fix kicks. (light electronic music) My name’s Joshua Marin. I’m 20 years old, and I’m a cobbler. I grew up in the north side of Chicago, born and raised. Growing up, I would always go to my father’s shop. My father’s a cobbler, my grandfather was a cobbler. He taught me everything that I know. I was like, you know what, I’m gonna take this to another level.

I’m gonna bring my sneaker culture into this, and I’m gonna go hard. I’m gonna do this for a living. (hip-hop music) When I started, I would go to thrift stores, and I would find shoes, and I would fix them up. I would repair them, touch them up. It was one time where I found a pair of XIIs, a pair of Jordan XIIs. So I bought them for I think $21. I cleaned them up, I painted them up, put new laces on them and sold them for like around $180. After that, I got influenced into the sneaker culture. I’m like, hey, you know, I could make a living off this. I could clean up the shoes and I could sell them. Cobblering is like a art form, you know? People live for this, people are artists, people that design their own shoes. A lot of teenagers, they’ll be like, I want this colorway, I can’t find it anywhere, you know, can you please provide this for me? I’m like, yeah, sure, you know, I could paint it up for you, I could make them look how you want them. It’s always a good feeling of, make people smile, make people pleased with my work.

Because I’ve helped them out, and they help me out. (light hip-hop music) I feel like I like to represent Chicago, just because that’s home. You know, it’s home, this is where I belong, this is where I have to represent. I opened up three shops within a year. A lot of people think that’s crazy, a lot of people like, how’d you do it? You know, what are you doing? I’m just hustling. I get a lot of support from the neighborhood. When people come in the shop they’re like, oh, who’s the owner here? They be like, oh, you’re the teen cobbler.

I’m like, yeah, that’s me. So, it makes me feel like home. You know, it makes me feel like I belong here. I’m purposeful for this, this is what I’m meant for..

As found on Youtube



Tags: #Air Jordans #Biography & Profile #Chicago #Cobbler #diy #docs #documentary #gbs #great big story #Jordan II #Jordan III #Jordans #Joshua Martin #Kicks #lag #Nike #Nikes #Northside #Refurbished #Sneakers #The Chi

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