I need new shoes. My current one are pretty broken so it’s clearly time for new ones. I must admit I have a lot of shoes, just not good shoes that I can actually use everyday and walk well in. I have to major problem when buying shoes: I have wide feet, I need to be able to fit my insoles, I easily get blisters, they need to be comfortable to walk a lot in and they need to fit with dresses. High-maintenance I guess. And now, I decided that I want socially sustainable shoes, preferably with ecological or reused materials.
For shoes that are suitable spring to autumn, I’ve been browsing four brands to choose between. They’re basically different sneakers.
- Ethletic and their fairtrade converselike-sneakers. They pride themself on being vegan and using sustainable materials such as cotton grown without pesticides and chemicals, and natural rubber. They also prioritize social sustainability and work on projects where the workers together use part of their wages toward a common goal such as education, healthcare, micro-loans etc. They look nice, and white or black pair does work really nice with a dress.
- Solerebels with their ethiopian-styled shoes. An important question for their business is fair wages and they pay four times the legal minimum wage in Ethiopia, plus they have full medical coverage for their workers and cover transportation to and from the factory for all workers. They do not base wages on quotas but instead treasure a fair and good working environment. I’m looking at their runaround freedom shoe in denim blue. They’re beautiful but maybe not perfect for dresses.
- Indosole have repurposed soles from car tires and the shoe is hand crafted. They are a B Corp, meaning they’re pretty much fairtrade and take care of their workers. I’m checking out their JJ Shoes. But they do look a bit to pointy for my feet, so it is not my first hand choice.
- Veja, sold though Green Laces, is my fourth consideration. They use responsibly grown cotton, without pesticides or chemicals, grown by a plethora of families and fairtrade. They produce on demand and do not have a stock that can go to waste and constantly review ways they can minimise their environmental impact. Veja works with manufacturers in Brazil and are paying a over minimum wage while working to improve workers conditions. I like these, they look super comfortable and soft, but I don’t think it will work with dresses or my style of clothing.
- SkråmträskSkon, made in sweden with vegetable tanned leather. They are five people working in the company, doing the entire process at side and with pride. I love their shoes, they look wonderful and I think they would be really good for my feet. However, I am looking for a pair that is good for summer and nice weather. These are more an autumn, winter kind of shoe. Perhaps I will order a pair later, but not today.
After consideration on which ones would work for my feet, go well with dresses and resonates best with my social interests, I’ve finally decided on Ethletics dark blue sneakers. I will tell you how they work for me later.