David Filar: Footwear Designer and Community Builder

Tell us a little bit about you? 

My name is David! I describe myself as an artist, creative, and with many different titles! My family immigrated to the US from Poland, and I owe everything to my family, as taking that leap of faith for a better life is scary. I am not sure if I would have been able to make the jump, but my parents provided my two siblings and me with the American Dream!

I am a designer and creative, specifically with footwear design and development! However, we live in a “slash generation” where everyone does a little bit of everything, and it is hard to align fully with one specific role. For example, in my spare time, I host podcasts, am a Worcester Arts Council Board member, and paint commission pieces.

My mantra is maximizing the day with the things that make me happy, which allows me to wear many hats every day!  

Who (or what) influenced you when you first got into sneakers? 

I was always drawing as a kid and didn’t realize it could be a career! I applied to be an architect in college. They rejected me and told me if I chose a new major, I would get accepted, so I chose Civil Engineering. I hated Civil Engineering, and one of my roommates was studying Industrial Design, which I immediately fell in love with.

Growing up, I have always loved sneakers but did not have the money for a pair of Jordans. It might sound crazy, but I have never owned or even tried on a pair of Jordans in my life – I am not sure if I ever want to! So, I always looked for affordable underground brands on KarmaLoop and wanted my sneakers to be unique. I always wanted, and still to this day, to want to walk into a room with a pair of sneakers that no one owns. This always turns into a fun conversation, and I have met some incredible people!

One of the most significant moments in my career with sneakers was meeting Michael Petry, the former Creative Director at Frye Boots. I met him, showed him my sneaker sketches on my OG iPhone, and got positive feedback. That was all the validation I needed to jump into footwear design, and I have been in footwear for nine years now!

What would your dream collaboration be / who would you want to design a shoe for? 

Good question! I am not really a starstruck person and would want to design a shoe for whoever is a genuine person. I have been lucky to have been able to work with some great celebrities, athletes, and creatives, but ultimately, I want to work with good people with great stories. Sometimes, the story and context are lost behind the creative process, like with Jeff Staple and Staple Pigeon. I wish more people knew about the origin behind the design, as the Pigeon is a symbol of New York City is so brilliant and makes the release more meaningful. 

I have always admired YSL and love their design, which is always clean and unique. It would be fun to partner with YSL! Beyond traditional retailers and brands, more companies are creating collaborations, so it would be interesting to work with Tesla and non-traditional retailers.  

What was your inspiration for Endstate building in 2023? 

I have always wanted to partner with the greatest artists, athletes, and entrepreneurs with a great story. There is a massive gap between the stories for these individuals and the getting the products they care about into their fans. These creators have built incredible fans and community but, unfortunately, do not have the bandwidth to create another brand. At Endstate, we want to be the platform that enables these creators to bring unique experiences to their fans. 

DeVonta Smith, the Wide Receiver for the Eagles, is one of the creators that we have been working with, which has been incredible. His fans could purchase a pair of his shoes, and we could curate unique experiences for the buyers, such as getting free cheesesteaks for every time DeVonta Smith caught over 41 yards and watching Monday Night Football with other sneaker others. It has also been a great way to bridge and build a community against the sneaker holders!

On January 3rd, we hosted a meet and greet with DeVonta that anyone with sneakers was invited to attend. One of my favorite moments was a mother and daughter came in because the daughter saw the event on social media. She is a massive DeVonta Smith fan and purchased a pair of sneakers that allowed them to meet DeVonta. They were smiling and so happy – it was incredible to unlock a core memory for them!

I believe this is the future of products, which validates the long nights, as seeing the consumers loving the products and community. We are bringing people together, making new things, and building a community!

What is one of the most exciting things for you in Web3? 

Smart contracts, perks, and utilities unlock a new customer experience and community for brands. We have been able to reward original customers who have supported us throughout our entire journey, starting at Drop 0. So, when we launched Drop 2, we could reward these customers and build value in their original purchases.

Also, our sneakers have chips to show the original purchasers and current owners, which we use to unlock benefits for their wallets. This helps with authentication and ensuring that these benefits go to the correct person. Web3 is building the future of loyalty that goes beyond solely rewarding the highest paying customers but also looks at engagement and community building. 

One of my favorite things is seeing all the Endstate members that say “good morning” in Discord and have made many friends through the community, including going to a Steve Aiko concert with one of the members.

What is something you wish you knew before starting Endstate? 

Startups are not for everyone! I knew what I was signing up for when I joined, and I have always loved to work. There are only tasks, hurdles, and problems that you need to continually try to tackle. However, there are no daily tasks, hurdles, or problems. You need to get up every day and want to change the world. If you are not a problem solver, you should not be at a startup. 

If there was one thing you would want the sneaker community to know, what would it be? 

Outside of Endstate, we are building the future template for all products. Everyone should research, read, and listen about Web3 and NFTs because if you are not, you are not setting yourself up for the future. Please pay attention to the momentum behind it and the buy-in from large brands creating or partnering with Web3 companies. It is the way of the future, and more people need to begin to embrace it.

How can the larger sneakerhead community help you with Endstate and everything you got happening in 2023? 

Checkout Endstate! Please do your research, but we are a team with a proven track record and consistently executing on being the best company. Within 18 months, we are releasing our 9th Drop, and we have been moving super quickly. So please join our Discord and stay tuned for drops in many new verticals coming soon.

If you want to connect hit me up on my website, instagram, or Twitter, as I love connecting with other people building in the community!