Who runs Vamvas and where are you guys from (born and raised)?
We're Aaron, Noman and Enrique, three friends in their twenties with a huge passion for adventure, fashion, and the environment. We are from Madrid, Spain, although we each come from different cultural backgrounds. In September 2015 we came to the US for business school and fell so much in love with California that, after graduating, we decided to risk everything to pursue our dream and start our own company in the US instead of going back home. Our moms sure miss us, but they're very proud we're making a difference with our eco-friendly shoes.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Our inspiration comes from Mother Earth. Our shoes are made with premium natural materials, so they have a strong connection with our planet, which we like to capture with our limited edition designs. That's why all our shoes are unique and take their names and colors from beautiful natural elements such as Moss, Sky, Graphite... and we only make 500 pairs of each color.
Do you plan on expanding or is shoes the main focus business wise?
Shoes were a great starting point, because our feet support us day in and day out, taking us where we need to be and, when pointed in the right direction, also where we want to be. We thought that, for all their hard work, feet deserved a little extra love, and VAMVAS is here to provide it.
Our vision is to evolve into the go-to brand for sustainable, eco-friendly fashion. We strive to create thoughtful products that don‘t just look and feel great but can also be worn with pride because they represent a firm commitment to doing things in a better way. We literally just started and are already making shoes in a better way, so we're very excited to bring our special touch to other garments in the future.
Colored soles, how did that come about? what made you guys decide to do that?
Our soles are better in so many ways, that we thought the best idea was to make them stand out with unique colors, and our customers love it. Our soles are made with natural gum rubber, which is a renewable and biodegradable material that comes from a tree and provides great comfort and durability. "Oh, these are so comfy!" said every customer that ever tried our VAMVAS.
Unfortunately, most other brands are cutting corners, using harmful synthetics for their soles, such as petroleum derivatives. We believe that natural and sustainable is the way to go and are proud to show it off with our colorful soles.
Did you go to school for fashion or design?
Our background is in business and marketing, so we had no clue what we were doing when we started making shoes (and we're still figuring it out). We just had a clear vision of what we wanted to achieve and let our passion and determination guide us towards it. After months of learning on the go, trial and error, and sleepless nights on the drawing board, we finally crafted our VAMVAS, successfully harnessing the amazing properties of the natural materials they're made with.
Do you like doing our markets? What could we expect from you at our future markets?
We LOVE Artists & Fleas! It's such a vibrant community of designers, artisans, and friendly visitors. Such good vibes and awesome people. We simply couldn't think of a better way to spend a Saturday in Venice.
We have great plans for our market pop-ups. We're a pretty young company (just started earlier this year), and Artists & Fleas is a great platform to connect with our online fans in a tangible space. We're very excited to have so many social media fans come visit us at our Artists & Fleas pop-up and engage with us and our products. It also works the other way around, we have visitors that discover us at our pop-ups and become raving online fans. As our fan base grows, we hope to bring our community together at our pop-ups and organize fun activities that promote sustainable and purposeful living.
One last thing: if you're coming to visit us at our pop-ups, don't forget to bring any shoes you no longer need. We're collaborating with Soles4Souls, a non-profit organization dedicated to giving shoes to people in need so they can thrive. You'll be able to help us wear out poverty by donating shoes and making someone's life better. Give shoes - give love :)