“I would say that pound for pound, Melbourne has the best scene in the world.” says Simon Wood. A textbook sneakophile, Simon - also known as Woody, also known as the founder and editor of the world’s favorite shoe bible, Sneaker Freaker – is one of the few people with the chops to make such a claim. An Aussie to the heart, Woody has no qualms running his big time magazine from his (comparably) small time city – and if his words on Melbourne are true, then there might be no better place for a sneakerhead to call home.
We chatted with Woody about the magazine, the city in which it’s produced, and how it is that he came to be more fashion-forward than a Hilton sister.
Oh… and we also talked about shoes. A lot of shoes.
Freshest Kidz: What made you decide to turn your sneaker obsession into a print magazine?
Woody: Well it was simple really; I really thought I could just get a load of free shoes! There was no business plan, no grand scheme, and no idea that I could see into the future or imagine that I’d still be doing it five years later on a global scale. I’ve done a lot of projects and jobs over the years and the mag was a good idea at the right time! You never know how true that is until you’ve already done it.
Freshest Kidz: Why have you kept Sneaker Freaker bi-annual as opposed to quarterly or monthly?
Woody: I just didn’t have the resources in the first few years. I actually did nearly everything on those first five issues, and I didn’t have the ability to hire any staff until a couple of years ago. We made money, but I always had other jobs and there was no way or time to go out, sell ads, and get the money rolling in to fund the expansion - so it just evolved slowly. In 2008 we’ll be doing three issues. Quality is the most important consideration; I don’t ever wanna be accused of doing a shitty, lazy issue with a bunch of rewritten press releases. I think three magazines per annum will cover everything and not leave us scratching to come up with enough to keep the fans happy.