I Made My Own Sneaker! M251


 I almost can't believe we're finally here.

I've reviewed so many products over my lifetime on YouTube

that it's almost ridiculous

and the question always comes up in the background,

"Well, Marques,

When are you gonna make, and design your product, right?"

So two years of materials work and design work

and a lifetime of inspiration later,

I'm holding the thing, this is the first one.

It's called M251.

Why is it called 251, you might be asking.

Good question. I'm glad you asked.

So this is still a collaboration after all.

I could have all the ideas for shoe stuff in the world

but I still need someone to build the shoe.

So Atoms is the company that's come through for me

on this one.

They've had their Model 000 and then Model 001.

They've been hailed as some of the most comfortable shoes

of all time and I agree

but this would be something completely new for both of us.

The length of my first-ever YouTube video, on tech,

Yeah, that one, was two minutes and 51 seconds long,

a new beginning and this is also sort of a new beginning.

(dramatic upbeat music)

The Idea

Now if you know me, you already know I like shoes

but I'm not suddenly a shoe designer out of nowhere.

So the idea was that I would take all sorts of bits

and pieces from different shoes that I like,

shoes that I've worn, shoes that I've seen,

and try to combine as many of them in one place

as I possibly can.

So the lightweightness of NMDs,

the silhouette of Jordan 1s,

things like the soul and the elastic laces of Atom's shoes

and the little bits and details

and tiny things from Blazers and Off-White collabs.

And so we went through a lot of prototypes

and a lot of things like that to sort of accomplish that,

The Process

Put them all in one place.

So the process was really fun actually

and we went through as many combinations as possible

and went through a ton of different ideas and designs.

We're trying to figure out what was possible

and what wasn't in a shoe.

We have a lot of older prototypes

that we didn't go with that had things like fitment issues

and support issues and material issues

and we went through and Atoms could tell me,

like, this will be possible versus this won't be possible.

This will be more expensive

versus this won't be more expensive.

And so all the different parts of the shoe

had to come together

from our combination of expertise and taste.

It was one of the most fun processes I've ever gone through.

And then the other part of that

Was I got to wear them around

and start testing them.

So once we got working prototypes, like this one,

I wore it for weeks.

Started showing up in videos by accident

just because I was just daily driving these things every day

testing my creation.


So we went through dozens of samples over two-plus years.

I mean this is a long process where, like,

We have an idea for a YouTube video

and we can do that in a couple of days.

and in the background for a long time

but we finally have come to a final version

and I like it and I'm now excited to, like,

Get you guys to wear it and try it yourselves.

So now I can't review my product,

I'm excited for other shoe reviewers

To be able to do that,

but what I can do is tell you all about it.

So the silhouette is pretty simple, right?

It's not fully high-top, but not a low-top either.

It's a comfortable daily mid

and this upper is a combo of synthetic leather

Then we have a recycled mesh fabric

That's a nice balance between breathable and supportive

and it took a lot of samples to get that right.

And if you're curious, development-wise,

This soul was the hardest part.

So I'm on my feet all day.

My job as a video producer in this studio

does involve a lot of walking.

It's a lot of moving around and crouching

and kneeling and all kinds of stuff like that.

So comfort is a high priority.

So this outsole has to be supportive enough

to function and hold up the shoe

so it doesn't collapse but still be soft enough

through the midsole so that it's comfortable.

And this bottom soul is proprietary.

It's all very, I dunno, came together super nicely.

We also did something a little bit interesting,

just if you see the shape along the side.

So this is a little bit of structural

It's a little heel-to-toe drop.

So if you're used to wearing shoes that are a lot flatter,

like Js or Converses, you will notice and feel

a bit of a difference with this shape and it's really good.

There's a copper lining in here,

that's naturally antimicrobial,

which does help prevent odors, which is awesome.

My signature and size stamp is on the tongue.

We've got this loop on the back too,

which is functional

and that's where we put the Atoms logo,

which is the top one here

and the MKBHD parallelogram in the same style.

And of course, the elastic laces, are underrated.

A lot of people don't know about these

But you can sort of just treat them like normal laces,

Maybe tie 'em a little looser or tighter,

and then they flex a little bit to support your foot

as you're moving around.

There are little details like the New York City tag,

The 251 is stitched, even after taking it apart,

Even the soul is custom-designed

and it kind of cups your foot a little bit

and is soft as well.

All of this stuff is awesome.

I really couldn't be happier with how these turned out.

Now if you get these, you have to promise me one thing.

Wear your kicks.

I am such, like, there's this whole culture of, like,

you get shoes and then you have to like baby them

and take really good care of them for proper resale value.

No, no, no.

You gotta daily these

and, like, wear 'em out and put them to work.

I still get, I still get roasted on Instagram

for, like, crouching down in a picture, and then the toe box is creased

and then all the comments are like,

"What are you doing? You're ruining your shoes."

So no, wear your kicks, crease your kicks,

Wear them in all four seasons.

I'm gonna be dairying these things.

We put a lot of work into the engineering of them

to be able to do that.

So winter, spring, summer, fall, snow, mud,

You'll be able to see mine on social media

getting dirty as I wear them a ton.

We love that.

So I'm gonna make sure these are available

as worldwide as we possibly can.

And maybe you'll even see me pop up in a retail shop

once in a while to help just get the word out about them.

And I hope if you get them that you wear them too.

So this 251 is an exciting new beginning.

Also, I've been waiting a long time to do this.

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