Takiyah Ward is a formidable force in the community. Call her by any of these monikers—activist, artist, television show host, arts catalyst, Seattle native, and owner of the soon-to-open Re-Sole, Seattle’s first sneaker cleaning service—and she will answer.
Takiyah has been on her artistic journey since a youngster. In a recent Black Arts Legacies profile written
by Jasmine Mahmoud, Takiyah shares the story of how her practice of sneaker customization got started.
“I was working on a class project,” she recalls, “and a blob of paint fell from the brush and hit a shoe that I had next to my desk.”
For most, this would have spelled the end of useful life for prized sneakers, but for Takiyah, it was the start
of a new awakening and one that not only keeps the feet fly but helps to sustain the earth. With Re-Sole,
Takiyah is creating access to options for sneaker customization while extending the life of what can be
We all know the perils of stepping on a fresh pair of white sneaks. Remember the altercation that ensued
when the character Bugging Out chased down the character Clifton who ran over his Jordan’s in Do the
Right Thing? Bugging Out paid $100 for his Jordan’s and his friends deemed them ruined. This scene is a
highly dramatized characterization of some real-life issues, to be sure. Yet, in a world where Re-Sole exists,
these kinds of conflicts can now be avoided!
One can thankfully access an enormous amount of information on Takiyah Ward, and there is not much
that we can add. Except to say that we are extremely excited that Re-Sole will soon be our neighbor at
Midtown Square, and to encourage our readers to learn about this person who is changing the game on
Takiyah has given enormous gifts to our community through her artistic practice and her dedication to
rebuilding our Black community. As she continues to strive toward getting her store open, we urge our
readers to support her efforts with a donation. Learn more and support on her GiveButter page.