Former Inmate Lands Sneaker Deal with Footlocker

Bungee Brand Section inside Footlocker (Credit: Darrell Alston)

Darrell Alston is the owner of luxury sneaker brand, Bungee Oblečení.  Prior to designing sneakers, Alston was a hip-hop artist and toured the nation with big names such as, Nelly, Lil’ Kim, and Jermaine Dupri.  Alston would customize his shoes leading up to each show to help him standout.  He wants buyers to experience the same when they wear his sneakers.

“I want you to make a statement with your shoes as soon as you walk in the door”, said Alston.  Models like the Oblečení TNC 250 and Kaleidoscope come dressed in exotic fabrics and are sure to have on-lookers take a double-take.

Darrell Alston Chicago Defender

Although Alston had the opportunity to open shows for rap legends, he began selling drugs, which led him to being in and out of prison over the course of 12 years.

Darrell was given the idea to create a sneaker brand during his last stint in prison. “I didn’t know what I was going to do with my life at the time and I was just trying to figure it out, said Alston. He continued by sharing, “I remember saying a prayer, ‘God please guide me in a direction I need to go in, to be able to make it, so that I don’t have to come back to this place again’.  Drawing his designs in his cell took away the anxiety of being in prison.

Darrell Alston Chicago Defender
An original sketch Alston drew while incarcerated (credits: Darrell Alston)

“I would literally get so lost in my sketch that I didn’t even realize that I was incarcerated”, Alston expressed. Last month, Darrell received a phone call from Footlocker that blew his mind.  “Is this a Prank call? I don’t understand what’s going on right now”, he said to himself in disbelief.  It was true. Footlocker’s C.E.O. had his team call Alston after seeing an interview he did on the NBC: TODAY Show back in June and offered to have Bungee Brand sold in their stores.

Darrell is overjoyed with this collaboration and amazed that his shoes are being sold in the same store as brands, such as Adidas and Nike. “I went into Footlocker the other day just to see what my stuff looked like in there” he said filled with excitement. “Yooo, we’re next to Timberland!”, he thought to himself.  Today, Alston’s sneakers can be found in Philadelphia Footlocker locations and nationwide in the coming months.

In the meantime, you can purchase a pair from the comfort of your home now by clicking here. Click the video below to watch the whole interview.


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