neuzerling shoes
Senior Aubrey Neuzerling went viral on Tik Tok after actor Daniel Ezra ordered a pair of her custom shoes.
Photo by Aubrey Neuzerling

Senior’s Small Business Gets Celebrity Attention

Grace Denison

Manchester University’s Aubrey Neuzerling paints, customizes shoes, jackets, cornhole boards, Yeti Cups, etc., and sells them online to people all over the country.

Neuzerling got into customizing shoes during the 2020 pandemic. She has always been an “artsy” person. Neuzerling got the idea from another student and has been successful ever since. “I thought it’d be something fun to try out,” she said. “So I started out customizing shoes as gifts for friends and family, and it kind of grew from there!”

When she started her hobby she watched hours of YouTube videos and practiced for long hours. She paints mostly Nike Air Force Ones as well as Vans. She does designs that range from very abstract to realistic. Neuzerling has an Etsy boutique where she sells her shoes that she has customized.

The furthest she has shipped shoes was Germany, Alaska and England. She also has a celebrity client. “All American” actor Daniel Ezra, reached out to Neuzerling to have a pair of shoes done. When he made this purchase he direct messaged her on Instagram. She made an Instagram reel about this purchase that quickly gained popularity.

“When Daniel Ezra messaged me I honestly didn’t think much of it at first,” she said. “I wasn’t familiar with the show ‘All American,’ and I didn’t realize how big of a deal it was until all my friends started freaking out.

“But he honestly kickstarted my business by posting my customs on his IG page with over a million followers, so I’m very thankful for him taking a chance on a small business. I believe I had less than 300 followers at the time and now I have almost 4000 followers on Instagram.”

She continued: “I’ve had a few social media influencers reach out to me right after the Daniel Ezra attention. Although they were asking for free customs in exchange for a social media post. At the time, I didn’t have money to give out free customs like that. Daniel Ezra paid full price for his.”

What does she charge? “The price ranges really depend on the shoe and design complexity,” she said. “Air Forces and Vans range from $60-110. My design minimum is $50, but I’ve sold a pair of air forces for $500.”

Her favorite pair of shoes she has done was her “Attack on Titan” design. “This pair of shoes was totally outside of my comfort zone, but I was really proud of the results,” she said.

After graduation this year she plans on being more active on her social media platforms and continue to design custom shoes, jackets and other items.

Her most recent designs include the Red Dragon Air Force Ones and a cow print pair that are sunlight activated. Neuzerling’s designs can be seen on her Etsy as well as her Instagram page (@ customsbyaubrey), Tik Tok (@customsbyaubrey), and her own personal website (