Our team got bigger!
A lot sooner than ever before we´ve already started manufacturing a part of our sandals for the coming summer season. Our team has grown as we have employed a new full time tailor since august and a proficient shoemaker since October, both in full time which are going to support us for the increased demand we are expecting this summer But we´re not only working on filling up our shelves with our handmade barefoot sandals, we work on other things as well. Already in summer in July I wondered “all-in or nothing”!? Especially in our workflows we continuously reached our limits. Difficulties with our manufacturing processes and the usage of wasted cuts and pieces, cutting techniques that produce less waste and our pressing and gluing technique we quickly reached our limits. It was clear that we had to increase our capacities and therefore start creating more space and massively invest in that endeavor.
We´re right in it!
What exactly are we doing at the moment? As usual we made big plans. We´re going to equip our production site with 2 new and big assembly stations. As soon as they are in place we´ll have enough space for 4 new sandal assemblers. We doubled our sewing atelier in size from 25sqm to 50sqm with a new working table for the leather cuts and a special with 2 sewing stations, a huge cutting table for the leather cuts and a special machine spot with the new important leather sanding machine. In total there are now 4 new sewing spots and a work spot and once we´re done with it we´ll be able to have 15 people work simultaneously on their own working spot on our chala sandals. We put a lot of work that plan and are now in the middle of the whole project. We´ll be able to finish a part this year and then do the rest next year.
Big updates for our important sandal models
We´re not only preoccupied with remodeling our workspace we´re also working on intensively on a huge update of our topseller models the Evo 4.0 XRD our first running sandal and the RUN 2.0 XRD with a beautiful Antique leather look and our Pinatex Premium models. The new Eco model will get a complete beauty upgrade as well as one major important update. It will get a more robust, exclusively manufactured Chala button underneath the sole to attach the straps to the sole. This button is much more robust and perfectly meets our own high demands and will reduce our already extremely low return rate of about 1% by half to only about 0,5%. This development will be available in January and get a new name: the Evo 5.0 XRD. The RUN will be delivered with an exclusive, manufactured only for this model button lace, which will make the sandal much more robust and increase its lifespan tremendously. Also on longer and more intensive walks or runs you´ll avoid to walk off the former regular button underneath your sole. This new RUN will also get an updated name in January: the RUN 3.0XRD. The most important update will happen with our sustainable and vegan Pinatex model. We´ll offe a completely new strap construction using an elaborate sewing and sharping technique for which we already got new equipment. The Pinatex model will also get the more robust button, a new label and a more sustainable toeband. By implementing these measures we´ll be able to manufacture a completely new high-quality Pinatex sandal which finally meets our own high demands and criteria for our sandals. This sandal will also get an updated name and will be called the Pinatex 1.0 Premium vegan.
New product pictures and high-quality portrayal
With all these changes our product pictures which you can find everywhere online are not suitable for today’s times anymore as they don´t show accurately the look of our sandals anymore after all the small incremental changes we´ve done over the course of the past years and for the new models we´re going to offer in January. We´ll improve on these as well, this means that we´ll take new product pictures which will depict our handmade sandals perfectly, so that you can imagine what they would look like on your own feet during summer season. But we don´t want to simply take the same product pictures that everyone else is taking by simply placing their product in a photobox - we want to make our product pictures special. Especially because our sandals don’t have such a short life cycle as many other products and are being replaced every 6 months by “new” products. We want to shed a unique light on our sandals on a special background. This will not be easy and will be very time consuming as you need a real concept to ensure that you will get great pictures which show our sandals with all their details and accessories.
The intensive protoyping is making progress
Additionally we´re also working on other projects as our “Alpini” sandals and have made substantial progress over the last few months and we hope that we can start with a special and exclusive pre- order sale. But the Alpini project is a project of its own category as we´re moving in the high-end area with this model as every minor detail is designed to ensure maximal durability and lifespan of this special sandal. Especially the 100% natural rubber sole used for this model are being manufactured by ourselves. The organic leather, the massive brass parts and the special sewing technique used for the high-quality leather straps take much more time in the manufacturing process than any of our sandal models so far.
Early preparation for our mobile shops
This year we want to finally start to send our mobile shops into the bigger German cities and therefore we started early to finally finish the preparation of our mobile shops so that they are available during summer season from Mai-July for you in your city.
We change how we support charities
We´ll also make changes in how we support the charity projects we supported from the first day on that we started making our sandals. So far we donated a small part of each sandal to the charity called “Little Light Feet” but want to make substantial changes which allow us to work even closer together than before. We want to create a long lasting educational project. We´re already looking into working together with pupils, trainees and manufacturing epochs. We feel not only responsible to work in a profitable manner but especially to teach young people the craftsmanship, the right usage of natural materials and the possibility to take a glimpse behind the scenes of a manufactury. We want to collaborate with an educational institution to which we can relate to. We´ll also reveal which institution this will be in the beginning of the new Year 2020. As you can see we still have a lot to do, even during winter. This year it even feels like we don´t have enough time as we´re already counting the weeks until the summer season begins and from today on it´s only 12 more weeks and we learned what that means last year in June when the demand for our sandals increased drastically.