Funded! This project was successfully funded on August 18, 2013.

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Handcrafted US made footwear. Styled by you & ethically made by us. Being green is not easy, but it is fabulous.

                                                                                     6 Style Options ...

NEWS (JUST ADDED! Black & Tan wood sandal for $85.00) Or get 1 different pair of NJ shoes & pay only $71.00 to add a sandal to your order. Pricing includes shipping & tax. We can do wider widths.

VIRGINIAS:  Skimmer flat. Custom features. Vibram sole. SIZES: (US WOMEN's) 5, 5.5,  6, 6.5, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 10, 11 Don't see your size? Message us

NOW AVAILABLE WITH OR WITHOUT THE SMALL HEEL!

LEROYS: Custom features. Vibram soles, Comes with 2 sets of laces, black and cream. SIZES: (US MEN's) 4.5, 5.5, 6.5, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 9.5, 10, 10.5, 11, 11.5, 12 (for women subtract 2 sizes, wide foot subtract 1.5 sizes)  Don't see your size? Message us

SALLYS: Custom features.  Vibram soles. 2 sets of laces, black and cream. Cushioned insoles. SIZES: (US WOMEN's) 5, 5.5, 6, 6.5, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 10, 11 Don't see your size? Message us

PRISCILLAS: Cushioned 3” heel with 1” inch platform. Custom features. SIZES: (US WOMEN's) 5, 5.5, 6, 6.5, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 9.5, 10 & 11-14 for additional $75 charge, add to your pledge amount.   Don't see your size? Message us

SYLVIAS: These boots come in black textured beautiful manmade leather.  Vibram soles. SIZES: (US WOMEN's) 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

ABOUT MATERIALS: Not only do we use the highest quality US made manmade leathers and suedes... BUT  All materials are sustainably produced. They are scientifically engineered to be more durable than leather, while still being as breathable and as beautiful as traditional leather.

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SEAL THE DEAL...

OUR STORY: Nicora Johns

The idea for starting the company began with both nostalgia for an old American craft lost and a genuine empathy for all the unemployed American artisans. These folks could be benefiting from having full-time fulfilling work as craftspeople making shoes. (Including the founder of the company). Currently only 1% of the shoes Americans buy are made in America and this number decreases by 7% every year. All the while, Americans are still spending billions of dollars annually on shoes. There must be a solution to this conundrum?

Today, the shoe industry is one of the highest polluting industries in the world. Between the chemicals required to treat leather or make synthetic materials and the agricultural destruction caused by overgrazing livestock, shoe materials make the top ten list of world’s most polluting industries every year.

But what if the US shoe industry were to make a comeback, but we do it more eco-conscious and socially-conscious than everyone else?

This is the EXACT idea behind our debut collection. Our plan is supported by a network of shoemakers and industry professionals here in the United States, who have helped us prepare our shoe company’s Kickstarter launch.  We all have a lot of hope at stake for our project as US shoe industry jobs continue to go abroad.

We are partnered with materials manufacturers that produce all of our eco-conscious, high quality man-made shoe materials. Our partners were chosen because they share in our goals of making production safer for the environment, eliminating waste and creating jobs for Americans.

Because we produce handmade shoes locally and buy from local suppliers, we are able to make custom sizes for little or no extra cost. We can also let our customers choose custom materials and colors.

___________________

The Current State of the Shoe Industry

Since you are reading this, it’s probably safe for us to assume you are a consumer who cares where their shoes come from. So lets get to the honest truth…

Over 80% of shoe materials production & shoe manufacturing occurs in developing countries that have substandard environmental regulations.  It takes 200 plus chemicals to make leather and according to UN statistics 70% of developing countries dump waste into groundwater and do not control emissions into the atmosphere. This is a recipe for polluted waterways, air pollution, ocean dumping  and risks to health and human welfare on a global scale.

With that said, the current state of the worldwide leather industry has rendered it impossible for us to use leather while keeping to our mission of using all US materials & environmentally responsible production. The leather industry is highly dependent on fast-produced factory farmed cattle and heavy chemicals to quickly turn hair covered hides into smooth, supple vibrantly colored leathers. Little attention is paid to the chemical dumping, water or air pollution created from tanning/dying nor to how/where the cattle were grazed  (rainforest land in South America for example).

All synthetic materials are not created equal. Synthetics are created with chemicals and when these chemical companies are not in countries with strict environmental regulations, the results can be catastrophic. It's important to know where the factories were that made the materials and where the chemicals components came from too. This is a burdensome task if you're just trying to buy a pair of shoes.

It's time for all of us to learn how to decrease our environmental impact. If we complain loud enough, the shoe industry will listen.

__________________

CREDITS

Still Photography - Christina M. Felice, www.christinamfelice.com

Video By - Andrew Van Baal

Wardrobe Stylist - Ivy Jarrin

Hair & Make-Up Stylist - Maia Wagle

Talent - Charles Deal, Rachel Fannan, Marissa Puget, Smith Puget, Blue Bear

Horse Handler - Cheyenne Jackman

Music by Matrimony, www.matrimonync.com

SPECIAL THANKS

Kris & Harry Kistorian, www.shoesusa.com

M. Lisa Odom, Esq., Legal

The Johns family of Atlanta, GA, Inspiration

Nell Alk, Press Relations

Johnson Motors Inc, Props http://www.johnsonmotorsinc.com

Mele Marchesseault, Stylist

Garrett Markenson, Advisor, Genius

William Martin, Logo Design, Web

Pauline Rallis, Materials Expert

Melissa Ramhold, Corbis Images

Andrea Reed, Bullet Belt Cuffs

Nicole Collins, Etsy : vintageshop11

Pete Julienne, Shoe Industry Veteran Extraordinaire

Julie Bonney & William Shanor, Bonney & Wills Shoe School

Larry Waller, Walrus Shoe Co.

Dick Anderson, Thornapple River Boots

Spencer Bruce, Jones and Vining

Ami Lum, Design

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

It is a huge risk to do something that has never been done before. If we are successful, we will be the first shoemaker to have 100% American handmade, eco-friendly, cruelty-free shoes.

First Challenge: It is nearly impossible to start a US made & sourced shoe company in a world that has become accustomed to outsourcing 100% of production to developing countries. Because of this, we have a limited number of workers left to choose from and limited suppliers. If there are any hiccups in our supply chain, it could potentially set us back months.

But thanks to the mountains of assistance we have in our operations management, we have fine tuned our supply chain so that our products do not require many different components, thus simplifying the process and saving money.

Second biggest challenge: we refuse to use any materials that are not 100% eco-safe and eco-produced. This makes it very difficult to find materials, most shoe materials are processed with heavy chemicals in countries that do not have fair labor or strict environmental standards. Therefore we will only buy local materials from factories we can visit, and companies governed by local laws.

We believe our mission to build planet-friendly shoes, produced entirely in the US, is a risk worth taking. The jobs that can be created & the precedents that can be set are worth it.

FAQ

  • In most cases the answer is YES. What we need from you is 2 simple measurements.
    1) a ball measurement: the width around the foot right behind the big toe joint & the pinky toe joint
    2) a heel measurement: from around the bottom of your heel across the foot to where the ankle meets the foot.

    All shoes are made individually, so sizing adjustments are simple

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  • YES. All of the materials we use are animal free & cruelty-free.

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  • YES, you did. We will send you a survey around the last week of the Kickstarter to collect all your information.

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  • He will send you measure instructions if you are not certain what size to get. We also recommend getting measured in a shoe store if you haven't done that in awhile. All our sizes are standard US sizes in mens average (D) widths, and women's average (B) widths. We can make some modifications for width too.

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    Signed 8x10 photo of a US shoemaker + their story. And a special thank you on our site.

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    2 pairs of genuine US Made Shoelaces _____________________________ Durable round laces available in Black or Cream.

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    Signed 8x10 photo of a US shoemaker & their story. AND 4 pairs of genuine US made shoelaces in black or cream.

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    26 backers Limited (24 left of 50)

    BLACK & TAN wood Sandal now available in black. US Sizes (Womens) 5-10

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    VIRGINIA (W) Skimmers ________________________ Comfortable everyday skimmer flat available in custom colors & materials. Try anything! (see swatches). Comes lined in soft cream manmade leather. Comes with natural colored durable sole. Sizes (W) 5 - 11. Email us if you don't see your size. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    VIRGINIA (W) Skimmers Comfortable everyday skimmer flat available in custom colors & materials. Try anything! (see swatches). Sizes (W) 5 - 11. Email us if you don't see your size. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    SALLY'S (W) Signature Lace-ups. __________________________________ Classy and comfortable. Custom colors & materials. (see swatches). Comes with 2 sets of laces, black & cream. See Product Images for more info. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    LEROYs (M/W) Signature Lace-ups. __________________________________ Classy and comfortable. Custom colors & materials. (see swatches). Comes with 2 sets of laces, black & cream. See Product Images for more info. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    LEROY'S (M/W) & SALLY'S (W) Signature Lace-ups. __________________________________ Classy and comfortable. Available in custom colors and materials. (see swatches). Lined with soft cream colored manmade leather. Comes with 2 sets of laces, black & cream. See Product Images for size chart. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    SALLY'S (W) Signature Lace-ups. __________________________________ Classy and comfortable. Custom colors & materials. (see swatches). Comes with 2 sets of laces, black & cream. See Product Images for more info. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    LEROYs (M/W) Signature Lace-ups. __________________________________ Classy and comfortable. Custom colors & materials. (see swatches). Comes with 2 sets of laces, black & cream. See Product Images for more info. (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    PRISCILLA Platform (W/M) Hand-cut Eco-wood _________________________________ Cushioned 3" heel with 1" platform. Platform available in natural, stained or black wood. Upper color customizable. See swatches for colors. Sizes (W) 5 - 10. And 11 - 14 if you add $75 to order (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    2 PAIRS: 1 LEROY or SALLY & 1 VIRGINIA _________________________ (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    2 PAIRS: 1 LEROY or SALLY & 1 VIRGINIA _________________________ (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    2 PAIRS: of LEROY's (M/W) and/or SALLY's (W) Signature lace-ups (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    2 PAIRS: 1 PRISCILLA (W/M) Platform & 1 VIRGINIA (W) Flat (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    SYLVIA (W) Knee-High Boot __________________________ Lace-up boot with low heel in strong black textured manmade leather. Durable sole in dark natural. Cuff is customizable, either a velcro wrap or lace up to the top. Whole Sizes (W) 5-10. We can make wider calf widths too if needed. :) (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    2 PAIRS: PRISCILLAS (W/M) Platform (INCLUDES SHIPPING & TAX)

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    4 backers Limited (6 left of 10)

    3 PAIR COMBO: Pick from any of our 5 styles (limited to 1 Priscilla platform & add $150 to add a Sylvia boot to your combo) + 1 extra set of laces, a personal thank you card from our founder & your name will be listed on our site as a backer.

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    5 PAIR COMBO: Pick any 5 pairs you desire + 3 extra sets of laces, a personal thank you card from our founder, a shout out on our site as a Mega-Backer & a picture of you (in your shoes, of course) in our "mega-backers" section on our site.

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    10 PAIR COMBO: Any 10 pairs you want. Super customized option on some styles + 4 sets of laces, a personal thank you card from the founder, a shout on our site as a Mega-Backer and a blog post all about you & your adventures in your shoes on our Nicora Johns blog!

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Funding period

- (60 days)