Choosing Eco Friendly Shoes

We talk about leaving a carbon footprint so what about the shoes on our feet? What impact are they leaving on Mother Earth? Leather shoes can take up to 45 years to decompose in a landfill while rubber soles of shoes can take up to 80 years. And some estimates put the decomposition rate of sneakers at about 1000 years! Many customers are also searching to keep animal products out of their system and off their bodies. Not merely can you purchase vegan food but you are able to also invest in vegan shoes!

Sanuk offers the ideal summer shoe line featuring flip flops, beach sandals AND surf sandals. While you will discover some leather offerings and some non-recycled materials used, the majority of their offerings get a large green thumbs up. The “Beer Cozies” line (what a ideal summer name!) uses recycled yoga mats for the foot bed, an eco-friendly PU Nubuck strap and can be a vegan offering. Their Recycled And Sustainable Trade Alliance (also identified as R.A.S.T.A) are produced with sustainable latex, hemp uppers, recycled tire outsoles and recycled PET liners.

Colorful Grass is actually a shoe provider that (according to their web-site) strives to be the “global leader of environmentally sound fashionable shoes & accessories.” Before they even began to design the shoes, the Colorful Grass team spent 2 years talking to customers about what they wanted in an eco-friendly shoe and what they wanted is the basis of their shoe line. Buyers wanted “vegan shoes, recycled soles, fashion shoes beyond sandals, eco shoes that are stylish and have a metropolitan style and most of all comfortable eco shoes that can be dressed up and/or worn casually,” and Colorful Grass responded with a modern collection of eco-friendly shoes!

For anyone searching for shoes that are truly one-of-a-kind, consider the “infinitely interchangeable eco-friendly sandals” from mohop! Started by Chicago-based architect Annie Mohaupt six years ago, mohop sandals are produced to order and customers can continue to customize their look with interchangeable laces. Thankfully, for those who cannot afford the $360 or so price tag, mohop is introducing a ready-to-wear line this spring featuring three styles – low ebony thong, mid walnut wedge and the high cherry wedge. Not only are they versatile with their interchangeable laces but they are also eco-friendly. Mohops are created using wood from Malaysian rubber trees that would normally be destroyed once they no longer were useful for latex production. The soles are produced in an ethically run factory in China before being finished in the United States.

Take the extra step and be sure to recycle or repurpose your old shoes. But don’t replace perfectly good shoes just for the sake of replacing them. Wear your shoes until they truly cannot be worn any more or if they are in good condition, donate them to a local shelter or Goodwill store. Nike collects old running shoes and repurposes them into supplies for sports surfaces including basketball courts, fitness flooring and playground safety surfacing. For non-running shoes, check in your area to see where to drop off shoes for recycling.
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The Brief History of Nike Shoes

Nike shoes have various styles and colors. They can be worn by professionals and daily walkers who like to make a fashion statement. You can easily find Nike stores in your area. The Nike swoosh logo has been considered as one of the most recognized company logos in the world now.

This special logo was originally designed in 1971 by a student who studied graphic design at Portland State University. They paid the girl only $35 for the fabulous design but some sources also say that Phil Knight, the co-founder of Nike, later gave her a diamond ring engraved with the logo she designed as well as an unknown amount of Nike stock. It is interesting that Knight was not very impressed with her work the first time, like what he said, “I don’t love it, but it will grow on me.”

Today, there have been more than 30,000 people employed by Nike around the world. Nike also provides other sports gear besides shoes. The company is under some scrutiny recently for the issues concerned with human rights and poor working environment. Official statistic shows that only in 2008, Nike has made a net income of approximate $1.9 billion dollars. The name Nike comes from the Greek goddess of victory. As a matter of fact, like many other famous companies, Nike also had a humble condition at the beginning. All of the original founders are used to be athletes and they have been running it for more than 50 years till now.

In fact, the duo first sold the shoes manufactured by a Japanese factory but in very short time they ended the relationship with the Japanese company in 1971. Afterwards, they started to improve their own line of footwear made mostly for football and decided to call it the name Nike. Soon they developed much more lines of shoes. With the development of technique and management, by 1980, abound 50% of shoes sold in the United States had carried the Nike brand. The headquarters the Nike company still locates in Oregon now and owns several subsidiaries such as Umbro and Converse.

Italian Shoes Made in China

Most of us don’t associate “Made in China” with luxury brands or designer brands, but the more Italian shoes you like that are actually made in China. You might not find the tag in the shoe saying that.

Especially in the current economic market, sales of luxury goods have declined significantly and some designer brands suffer. One of the most effective ways to cut costs is by moving base operations abroad, and China provides one of the most attractive markets to open stores.

The fact that “American” or “European” shoes made in China is not a secret. Nike has long been associated with “Made in China” shoes; In fact, about one in three Nike shoes are equipped with a “Made in China” sticker. This compromise is more difficult for designer brands like Chanel, Prada and Armani who have built their brand success on “European expertise” through and through. One of the reasons why someone spends 300 extra dollars buying Prada shoes is because they want a European piece of art. They want to believe that what they buy is the real deal – Italian leather shoes built by someone who knows and loves the art of shoe making, not by factory workers in China.

So which company jumped over the continent? Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Bally and Prada, to name a few brands. But not all of these companies are willing to publicize this new operating base. In fact, in some of these shoes you will find the label “Made in Italy” where maybe the label “Made in China” instead. This is possible thanks to a number of highly flexible labeling laws that base product labels at the end point of production. So shoes made in China will have leather soles installed in Italy and Voila! Legally “Made in Italy” shoes.

That does not mean that these shoes are of poorer quality than when produced in Europe. His claim is that workers in China are fast and precise. That is, they are able to make high quality shoes in less time and with less money.

According to Giorgio Bonacarso – a supplier of chemicals that sells products to Chinese factories that produce Italian shoes – nine out of 10 Italian luxury shoe companies now make at least part of their shoes in China. You, the consumer, might not realize it, and that’s because designer brands are afraid of reactions and loss of images that make them stand out from the pack in the first place.