For Inkkas, the Future of Star Wars is Female — Exclusive Reveal

The poise of Padmé Amidala, the faith of Leia Organa, and the strength of Rey have been drawn together for a new Inkkas design that celebrates some of the most courageous heroes in the Star Wars saga.

“We want to celebrate the complete saga,” says Tatiana Salaverria, Lucasfilm’s senior designer who worked with the unisex footwear company to create the print, “The Future is Female,” which will appear on two pairs of shoes in their new Rebel Collection.

A lifestyle image of Inkkas Future is Female shoes, part of the Rebel Collection.

What started as a simple sketch of Princess Leia from A New Hope drawn by Christine Lynn Johansen, the lead designer for Inkkas, evolved into a cohesive print, with all paths coming together in an elegant celebration of the original trilogy, the prequels, and the sequels. Each character flows into the next, with Rey’s simple signature arm bands blending into Queen Amidala’s elaborate headdress.

But simplifying these Star Wars icons into a line drawing came with its own challenges. “The most important thing was for us to get their likeness, even though it’s a little bit stylized,” says Salaverria.

Inkkas designer Christine Lynn Johansen shares some sketches from her "Future is Female" print.

Inkkas designer Christine Lynn Johansen shares some sketches from her "Future is Female" print.

With the shoes available for pre-order starting today, goes behind the scenes into the making of a saga-spanning print celebrating three generations of Star Wars women.

Inkkas designer Christine Lynn Johansen shares some sketches from her "Future is Female" print.

The fire of a queen

“Padmé, I think, was the hardest,”says Salaverria. “At first, she was a little too sweet. Padmé, she’s young, but she also has fire behind her.”

“She was looking a bit too young,” agrees Johansen, who tried to concentrate on capturing the emotion of the queen’s face. “It was a challenge going into it. That’s pretty much what we concentrated on getting exactly right. She has that stripe on the lip. We didn’t want it to look too heavy because since it’s all line work we tried to make to look feminine and pretty.”

Inkkas designer Christine Lynn Johansen shares some sketches from her "Future is Female" print.

To me, she’s royalty

For Leia, Johansen’s lines were too thick initially, with the detail on the character’s signature double hair buns giving her hair a little too much weight. “On this print, for sure, less is more,” she says. “It started with too much of a heavy hand. With the eyes, we needed it a little bit more realistic and the lips…we made them a little more subtle.

“We wanted to keep it classic, so with Leia it was a no-brainer to go with her gown,” adds Salaverria.

Inkkas designer Christine Lynn Johansen shares some sketches from her "Future is Female" print.

The next generation

For Rey, Johansen toyed with recreating the outfit that takes the character from the Resistance base to the feet of Luke Skywalker on Ahch-To. “We actually went back and forth quite a bit in terms of what costume to use,” says Salaverria. But ultimately the ensemble the character wore for most of The Force Awakens made the most sense.

The Inkkas' Future is Female camping boot.
The Inkkas' Future is Female slip on.
The Inkkas' Princess Leia Flex Force.

In addition to the “Future is Female” print on a slip on and camping boot style in the line, there’s a Force Flex X sneaker designed in the color palette of Leia Organa. All three shoes include a subtle Rebel Alliance emblem and a quote from Leia, uttered just before she and her would-be rescuers went diving into the Death Star’s garbage chute: “Somebody has to save our skins.”

The Inkkas' Favorite Droids slip on.
The Inkkas' Favorite Droids Flex Force.

The droids you’re looking for…

The line also includes two other pairs of shoes, a slip on and a Flex Force sneaker, that pay homage to two other vital, saga-spanning characters: R2-D2 and C-3PO. After all, if not for the brave little astromech and his fretful counterpart stowing away on an escape pod on the Tantive IV, the Empire’s quest for the stolen Death Star plans may have ended before the first act in A New Hope. The insoles for those designs channel Obi-Wan Kenobi and his trusty Jedi mind trick with the oft-quoted phrase, “These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.”

A Force for good

More than just beautiful pieces of footwear, Inkkas is a force for good, says company co-founder and Director of Sourcing and Distribution David Malino. The company’s OneShoeOneTree project plants a tree for each purchase. “Supporting environmental causes is a big part of our ethos. To date, the Star Wars and Inkkas collaboration has been responsible for planting 5,376 trees as part of Inkkas’ OneShoeOneTree program.”

And with TreesForTheFuture, the brand is helping to fight deforestation in developing nations. “They plant trees mostly in Africa,” he says, “and that’s an important pillar of what we do as a company.”

But the new print also speaks to Inkkas’ dedication to authenticity in original textiles and prints and inclusivity, depicting strong female characters on shoes to be worn by men and women. “As a brand and a company, it’s important for us to support causes and women’s empowerment,” Malino says. “What the company stands for is inclusiveness and this is something that we’re excited to celebrate. We want to make a statement that this is something we’re really excited about. And we want Star Wars fans to be excited with us and celebrate the powerful female characters in all the films.”

The Inkkas' Rebel Collection.

The Rebel Collection is the third collaboration between Inkkas and Star Wars, available for pre-order starting today.

Learn more about the company’s philanthropic initiatives at

Associate Editor Kristin Baver is a writer and all-around sci-fi nerd who always has just one more question in an inexhaustible list of curiosities. Sometimes she blurts out “It’s a trap!” even when it’s not. Do you know a fan who’s most impressive? Hop on Twitter and tell @KristinBaver all about them.

For Inkkas, the Future of Star Wars is Female — Exclusive Reveal

5 Star Wars Hairstyles We Love

Whether it’s Leia Organa’s unforgettable hair buns or Padmé Amidala’s decorative headdress, Star Wars is chock-full of iconic looks. While these hairstyles are no doubt unique and head-turning, many of them are also steeped in symbolism or cultural meaning. From Anakin’s over-the-shoulder braid to Rey’s hair knobs, they’re often associated with tradition and history.

Here are five of our favorite hairstyles from the Star Wars films:

Leia at the medal ceremony.

1. The Alderaanian braid

In Claudia Gray’s book Star Wars: Leia, Princess of Alderaan, we learn that the residing Alderaanian monarch typically wears braids. While the book doesn’t dive into anything deeper than this, they seem to be associated with tradition, nobility, and family. And, despite the loss of Alderaan, Leia continues to honor her heritage (especially her adoptive mother) by wearing them.

2. The Padawan braid

The Padawan braid may not be my favorite look (hello there, rat tail), but it holds a deep meaning to the Jedi Order. Traditionally, a training Jedi wears a tight braid that stems from the neck and drapes over one shoulder. But it’s more than just a tangible representation of your rank; it’s a symbol of dedication and sacrifice. In addition to abstaining from romantic relationships, they’re forced to sever ties with their families, as well.

3. Rey’s three hair knobs

Rey’s signature three-knob hairstyle is very practical. Whether she’s scavenging for parts on Jakku, training on Ahch-To, or running away from stormtroopers, she needs to keep her hair out of her face.

While the film doesn’t specifically address the meaning behind her hairstyle, I want to believe it has something to do with her childhood. In The Force Awakens, we see her rocking the same hairstyle as a kid. Is this how she stays connected with her family?

4. Padmé Amidala’s headdresses

Not only is Padmé Amidala the Queen of Naboo, she’s also the queen of elaborate hairstyles and ensembles. Her ornate headdresses are so big, they look like they have their own gravitational pull. And don’t even get me started on the array of colorful dresses. Whether it’s a senate meeting or a fancy dinner, she must have one heck of a bedroom closet.

My favorite look is Padmé’s throne room ensemble. Between the lightbulb-like embellishments on her bell-shaped gown and the gold and red headpiece, this look stands out above the rest. It’s head-turning, for sure, but it also says a lot about her exalted status, as it’s a symbol of power and wealth. She may be a child queen, but this look leaves no doubt that she can command a room.

5. Chewbacca’s glorious mane

This list wouldn’t be complete without an entry dedicated to one character who’s covered in hair: Chewbacca. Long and silky, Chewie’s luxurious brown mane is really the stuff of legends. It’s not a hairstyle, per se, but it’s obvious he takes care of himself (and has even been known to borrow Lando’s hair products in a pinch). If he ever sells haircare routine secrets to the galaxy, he’ll be one rich Wookiee.

 Ashley Barry-Biancuzzo is an editor at Reviewed, a division of USA TODAY. She also occasionally writes for Geek & Sundry and

5 Star Wars Hairstyles We Love