Hydrogen-1: crossover sneakers for work or anywhere, combining luxury Italian leather with sneaker comfort. Read more
This project was successfully funded on March 1, 2013.
About this project
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From being just sports shoes, sneakers have become footwear for any casual occasion. Now, as office wear becomes more relaxed, it’s time for sneakers you can wear to work - or anywhere. Hydrogen-1 introduces that next breakthrough: crossover men’s sneakers. Hydrogen-1 is the fundamental element of style: premium Italian quality combined with sneaker comfort.
My name is Hero Nakatani, creator of Hydrogen-1 sneakers. Like many men, I had a job where I needed to dress professionally. I wanted to look stylish and modern, yet feel comfortable at the same time. I always struggled to find leather shoes that met my needs. The comfortable shoes were too clunky and old-fashioned; the fashionable ones, too constraining. I thought how nice it would be to have superbly-made Italian shoes with comfortable sneaker soles.
I looked at what’s out there in the sneaker market and found only multicolored sport sneakers. In the fashion sneakers category, they were overpriced and over-stylized with logos plastered all over the shoes. In short, fancy sneakers that you could not wear to work, especially not with suits. So I set out to create shoes with the style and quality of my favorite work shoes, but also the comfort of my favorite weekend sneakers. Shoes that could wear all day – at the office, or hanging out with friends in the evening.
Hydrogen is the simplest, most fundamental element in the universe. Hydrogen-1 applies that idea to making sneakers with a modern, minimalist aesthetic – simple yet stylish. Remove all the unnecessary details and what is left is a clean, effortless style, right for the times and never overdone.
Getting it right in combining Italian quality with sneaker comfort also meant finding a manufacturer who “got it”. After an exhaustive search, I found that partner in Italy’s Le Marche region. Known as the heart of the Italian footwear industry, artisans here have honed their skills over generations. As our manufacturer has done for other well-known labels, each sneaker will be tailored and manufactured using the finest materials.
For our first collection we have two lines, with twelve styles in total. For the suit-and-tie guy, the classic line includes styles like Oxford, Chelsea, and Wingtip. For the khaki-and-jeans guy, the urban line comes in high, mid, and low cut styles.
Why Order Now - Limited Founder Edition
The project is in its final stage of design and development and ready for production. To make it all of this happen I need your help. I need to raise $89,000 to purchase the first inventory. If you like the shoes and want your own pair, please buy your limited, first edition shoes through this Kickstarter.
Participating now is the only way you can get the limited, founder edition shoes. These come with a distinctive Hydrogen-1 Founder edition logo and numbered certificate of authenticity, with special discounts of up to 30% off post-launch retail pricing. Within one month of the Kickstarter completing successfully, we will email you to finalize the style and size you wish to order.
When you buy high-quality sneakers, they can last longer and save you money in the long-run. Your cost per wear can be lower with high-quality sneakers that last for several years, versus a cheaper one that lasts for only one season.
For a complete detail of each of the 12 shoes please go to hydrogen-1.com or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about the shoes or this Kickstarter.
Beryllium (Be4) is a classic city slicker. An Oxford style, it's made from top grade Italian calf leather with a high quality rubber sole. It's a classic style, but with textured leather that complements both casual and formal wear. For added comfort there is a extra padding around the ankle. Comes in your choice of black or cream color rubber sole.
Boron (B5) is a full English brogue but is a Gibson instead of an Oxford. Just like classic brogue (or wingtips) they have the characteristic toe cap with extensions (wings) that run along both sides of the toe. We use very high quality Italian calf leather for breathability, resulting in less moisture from prolonged contact. The leather will develop a patina over time
Lithium (Li3) is simplicity itself. The thing is with simplicity, the balance has to be perfect - nothing to distract. Made from the finest Italian calf leather, this is shoe making at its best. It comes in textured leather to give it a modern look. Comes in your choice of black or cream rubber sole.
Hydrogen (H1) is the boot version of Boron: our biggest, baddest boot. We use very high quality Italian calf leather for breathability, resulting in less moisture from prolonged contact.
Krypton- KR36 mid cut sneakers are a contemporary blend of minimalism and expert Italian craftsmanship. What stands out is the special matte leather in blue. The pared-down design eliminates unnecessary stitching or gimmicks. Additional details include the hard-wearing sole, and full leather lining with padding around the ankle for extra comfort.
Oxygen-O8 is high cut sneaker with a less-is-more aesthetic. This versatile two-tone black sneaker can be dressed up or down. It features a premium full leather upper with luxurious black leather lining and a hard-wearing sole.
Our Size Chart
We will offer D, E, EE, EEE sizes
Rubber sole images
Thank you for your support!
Risks and challenges
Risk and Challenges
What if my shoes don’t fit?
We want you to be happy with your Hydrogen-1 shoes. If they don’t fit, ship them back to us in tip top condition and the original packaging, and we will be happy to exchange them for another available style or size.
Supplies of leather to the manufacturer or other projects could cause manufacturing delays. We could experience shipping delays due to US customs.
The range of sizes required in the shoe business, and our planned styles, mean that our inventory may not match demand. Such mismatches may result in write-downs for hard-to-move inventory. We plan to address this by working to reduce order sizes and cycle times, and building in to our business model some allowance for this.
Yes, the insoles can be removed so that you can use your own insole. Insole has some arch support.
We will produce up to US17- M, D, E, EE, EEE. Our size runs on the large size.
For the beryllium (BE4) and lithium (LI3) models, you will be able to choose black rubber sole. For the Oxygen (O8) this can be customized.
YES, but it will need to be sent back to us and there will be a nominal fee. It will also take a few weeks because it will need to be sent to Italy.
Yes, we will be able to make this in black. Just let us know when we confirm your order.
Pledge $15 or more
Thank you for making a pledge, you will receive a handwritten thank you note from the founder and a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or more
You will receive a custom Hydrogen-1 shoe bag for your future purchase of hydrogen-1 sneakers, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Only ships to: United States
Pledge $100 or more
You will receive a custom Hydrogen-1 shoe bag, shoe horn and shoe brush for your future purchase of hydrogen-1 sneakers, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Only ships to: United States
Pledge $200 or more
84 backers All gone!
EARLY BIRD SPECIAL . You receive ONE pair of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificate of authenticity, The first 85 pairs we produce will be signed by the founder and will ship first.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $210 or more
You receive ONE pair of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers, signed by the founder, and with a certificate of authenticity.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $250 or more
5 backers Limited (1 left of 6)
LIMITED OFFER. You receive ONE pair of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificate of authenticity, with free US shipping, plus a mention on our website… OR, BEST DEAL two pairs for $400, see belowEstimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $285 or more
1 backer All gone!
You receive ONE pair of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificate of authenticity, with free US shipping, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $400 or more
4 backers Limited (46 left of 50)
SPECIAL CUSTOMIZATION - You will receive ONE pair of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 OXYGEN model sneakers, signed by the founder, with a certificate of authenticity, and free US shipping. You will be able to customize your sneakers with your choice of leather and color of the rubber sole from the available options. THIS CUSTOMIZATION OPTION IS AVAILABLE ONLY ON THE OXYGEN (O8) MODEL.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $400 or more
14 backers Limited (36 left of 50)
BEST DEAL. Early Bird Specials are gone, but get the same price on TWO pairs of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificate of authenticity, with free US shipping, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $570 or more
2 backers All gone!
You receive TWO pairs of limited, Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificates of authenticity, with free US shipping, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $3,420 or more
You receive TWELVE pairs - the full collection, of limited Founder edition Hydrogen-1 sneakers and certificates of authenticity, with free US shipping, plus a mention on our website.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
- (23 days)