In a world where bigger is often better, the world of footwear is still struggling to keep up.
luckily there’s a pair of Oddballs that have got you covered.
Brothers, Seth and Zac Longaker know all too well just how hard it can be to find shoes when you have big feet (they both wear a size 16) and if you do happen to find a pair, the chances of them being fashionable and coming in anything other than beige or black is almost non-existent.
The brothers had always been tall, both standing over six-foot-six, and it didn’t take long for Seth and Zac to overtake their parents, teachers, and friends or pretty much anyone else the met at a young age.
But it all came to a head one day when shopping for a wedding as they struggled to find a decent pair of shoes, and what they did find were overpriced, uncomfortable, and ugly.
The store clerk actually laughed when they asked for a brand name shoe.
That moment changed them.
A dream was born
They realized that they couldn’t be the only guys around with big feet and that stores that didn’t stock larger sizes were missing a trick, so they figured they would plug the gap, “this was our opportunity” says Zac.
As men with big feet, they wanted name brand shoes, shoes that were stylish, comfortable, and available in different colors and they wanted to pay a reasonable price for their shoes, not double the standard amount.
With business degrees from the University of San Diego, the brothers thought they knew a thing or two, and they had nothing to lose, so they went about creating something that could cater to men with big feet and it didn’t take long for them to come up with the name, Oddball, which perfectly describes how they’d always felt when towering over everyone that they met.
The Oddball plan
With a severe lack of options available and hardly any footwear with an ounce of style, Zach and Seth knew what they wanted to create with Oddball and as Seth puts it, “Our concept was to have a place that had a great selection, a groovy atmosphere and that was customer service oriented, a place where size always matters.”
Soon after, in 1997, the brothers opened their doors in Northwest Portland, and Oddball shoes was born. Stocking shoes from size 13-20, Oddball shoes cater to all footwear needs, whether the customer is looking for a sports shoe or something more casual and they are proud to serve their local community both in-store and online.
Having recently celebrated their 20th anniversary, the brothers, and Oddball is still going strong.
The continued growth has led to a bigger location and in 2017 Oddball even launched its own XXL clothing line to give more options to the taller men out there.
However, on top of the wide range of shoes and the focus on high-quality footwear, what has truly kept the brothers in business is their commitment to providing outstanding customer service while serving the local community.
How Covid-19 is affecting Oddball shoes
With Covid-19 impacting the world, many businesses many are struggling to stay afloat, and while the brothers are no different, they are hopeful that their good reputation and strong sense of community will help them to survive when business gets back to normal.
For now though, the Oddball doors are closed and the brothers are unable to serve customers in Portland, although they are still able to process some orders placed online.
With such uncertain times, it will undoubtedly be the small businesses that suffer, but one thing’s for certain, whatever the future brings for this pair of Oddballs, with their big hearts and even bigger feet, they’ll continue doing their best to serve their customers and provide people, just like them, with comfortable and stylish footwear for all occasions.
How you can help
In such uncertain times and with unprecedented disruption to businesses, you can help Oddball by following their social media posts, on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and interacting with what they post, sharing, and commenting on their feed.
Although their store in Portland is currently closed, customers can still place orders online as Oddball ships around the United States and internationally.
With your help, Oddball can get back to serving the community and doing what they do best, providing tall men with socks, shoes, and apparel