Who are you and what do you do?
In 2008, Nik (34) and three of his friends laid down the blueprint for a European trainer convention with Sneakerness. Kai (33) comes from a retail family and has a solid business background as a banker. He’s also a former professional basketball player and maintains great contacts on the Swiss basketball scene. Together, in 2015, we opened the first consignment store for trainers in Switzerland at a great location in Zurich.
Where does your inspiration come from? Which artists/brands inspire you?
We are influenced by music and basketball from the 80s up to the present day. Rap and basketball have always gone hand in hand, and we’ve been influenced by both ever since our youth. If you want to make a good impression in basketball, you don’t just have to play well – you also need to look fresh. On the basketball court, trainers and accessories like headbands, wristbands or socks were often popular add-ons.
What do socks mean for you?/How important are socks for your outfit?
Quite simply, without socks, an outfit isn’t complete. With trainers, the socks are often the icing on the cake – with the right combination, you can make your favourite trainers look even better.
Which trainers would you most like to have designed yourselves?
Air Jordan 1 – This timeless classic was created by Peter C. Moore in 1984. Even today, this ‘oldie’ is still bought and sold at a high price. We have a pair ourselves in the store.
What do $auce and DillySocks have in common?
As local young entrepreneurs, we bring a breath of fresh air into the Swiss lifestyle and fashion sectors. Our products are targeted at connoisseurs who like to be unique and stand out from the crowd.
What’s your life motto?
Life is short so I’M GONNA DO ME!
Almost 10 years ago, Nik Otis and three of his friends brought Sneakerness to life, and since then, they’ve triggered real hype about trainers in Switzerland. Now, Nik is also leading the up-and-coming Zurich lifestyle shop $AUCE, along with Kai Huwiler. Every month, he attracts countless Sneakerheads – and for good reason. While trainer stores operating on a consignment basis – i.e. resale – might be nothing unusual in the USA and Asia, $AUCE is the largest shop of its kind in Switzerland. The idea is as simple as it is brilliant: in the shop on Zurich’s Badenerstrasse, just like on the website, unworn trainers – often limited editions – are resold to collectors.
Nowadays, trainers are much more than just shoes. They are fashion statements, collectors’ items and a life attitude at the same time. This is a philosophy that DillySocks promotes too – and a reason why we’ve teamed up with the Zurich brand with conviction. After all, without socks, there are no trainers! Things that belong together always find their way back to one another.
Along with the trainer store, we’ve produced three limited-edition sock designs. Whether it’s ‘Hot $auce’, ‘Triple $auce’ or ‘Soya $auce’ – these sporty gems offer something unique. Get yours now!