The motivation for Trash Footwear came about as I believe the way we use and exploit our environment needs drastically changing! We place little value on what it provides, using many things once then throwing them away, after they have been through a lengthy production process. So I wanted to contribute in a real way to help change this: Now in New Zealand there are only a handful of shoemakers left making shoes from new materials. As far as I know there is nobody in New Zealand making shoes out of a factory from recycled materials. Good chance to do something me thinks!
Before going overseas recently I made some sandals from my old jeans. I wore these in various countries and received positive comments around the world; from Perth to Thailand, Kenya and England. These lasted well for the whole 3 years, with the new sole wearing through first while the denim upper remained in good condition. I thought alot in this time about my idea: Initially considering second hand clothing (denim, corduroy, canvas) and motorbike tyres.
However, as Trash Footwear has begun to develop I have realised there is a massive range of 'Waste' materials I can use! Some material I have tried:
-Soling from motorbike tyres from a wrecker in Ngaruawahia and the Harley Davidson store in Te Rapa, and from used conveyor belting from a quarry outside of Raglan and a conveyor wholesaler in Hamilton.
-2nd hand clothing/fabric off cuts from various oppshops and Xtreme Waste refuse and recycling centre in Raglan, webbing, car seat belts, off cuts of thick bag making canvas and from a heavy duty canvas store in Hamilton. lino off cuts and samples sourced from Raglan Flooring.
At present i am mainly using the following materials :
-Used Conveyor Belting: for soling and bases, aswell as heacy duty canvas offcuts for bases.
-Use Clothing, fabric offcuts/samples, leather offcuts for uppers/straps.
*These are all sourced locally from within the Waikato!