A vegan shoe store called ‘Friendship Shoes’ opened up in Shoreditch. It focuses on environmental and cruelty free issues. Here is a short interview with the founders.
Who are Friendship Shoes / tell us a bit more about you and your company’s background?
Friendship Shoes was born out of a dream and then a realisation that there was a genuine gap in the market for stylish vegan shoes. As vegans we were looking for cruelty free footwear that we liked and found that whilst we could buy things they didn’t tick all of our boxes. We hope to bring a fun element into our shoes.
Where did your initial interest / passion for producing vegan footwear come from?
It really was about pleasing ourselves, our desire for style in the certain knowledge that nothing was harmed in the making.
Why is ethical / vegan fashion so important to you?
A vegetarian for 35 years, a vegan for about the last 4 years, I’ve long been concerned about our terrible abuse of animals. I can control what goes into my body and onto my body, doing this is activism, every small action counts.
Where do you take inspiration from?
Our style is gender fluid, we are about harmonising. In my initial dream the shoes were embellished with the Yin and Yang symbol, I now realise the symbolism is about embracing the light and the dark.
What changes would you like to see within the fashion industry 5 years from now?
I’d like to see a blanket ban on any cruelty in the fashion world, we have a long way to go but I see the change coming.
Describe the pieces in your current collection.
We have taken 5 classic pieces: A Monk, Brogue, Loafer, Dealer Boot and 6 hole Brogue Boot, the twist is in the colours. We never wanted to reinvent the wheel, we will be seasonless and genderless: One shoe fits all.
What’s next for Friendship Shoes?