Once upon a time there was a boy named Luís Maria Marvão. Born and raised in Portugal, as a child he had dreams of becoming an architect. As he grew into a man, his dedication enabled him to fulfill that dream, and his curiosity led him to travel the world. As his mind and his experiences expanded, his creativity led him onto a new path, still design focused but in a different and unexpected area. Check out our interview with the designer and founder of Shoes Your Mood; an innovative footwear brand with a convertible concept allowing for expression of individuality.
ethical muse endorses Shoes Your Mood for its local sustainability – designed and manufactured in Portugal by a Portuguese national. With a range of great colors, they are comfortable and perfect for summer. One shoe, many looks…
What’s an architect doing designing shoes? An architect is someone who tries to understand the world, aspiring to design something new and innovative. With that capacity and with the desire to create my own shoes, the idea, design and name all started to come together within a few days. But that was only the conceptual part. I needed to know if my idea could be produced. I processed the information as an architect would and then I went to visit factories. A few months later Shoes Your Mood was born.
Tell us about Shoes Your Mood. Shoes Your Mood is a brand of casual and convertible trainers. In one pair you have endless possibilities. The idea emerged in April 2014. By January 2015 a lot of progress was made, which led to the launch of the brand on June 5, 2015. The innovative concept allows individuals to express their mood through their shoes by changing out the tongue of the shoe and thus changing the entire look. It’s not just a brand of trainers, it’s a 100% made in Portugal product that allows you to express yourself.
What is the point of difference between Shoes Your Mood and other trainers on the market? The point of difference with our product is due to the velcro part of the shoe tongue, allowing it to be replaced with different patterns (moods) to change the shoe’s overall appearance. The trainers are designed out of canvas with an elastic strap inside that allows them to be worn as slip-ons. The shoe laces are strategically positioned to ensure optimal visibility of the shoe tongue.
In 2015 we had five base colors and 22 different patterns. As of March 2016 we will have 10 colors and 16 new patterns available in our shops. Due to new partnerships with other brands, different moods will be available soon. We consider these synergies essential for the sustainable growth of our company. Our aim is to widen our distribution channels in order to enter the international market.
What is your role with Shoes your Mood? Because we don’t yet have a large budget, I am everything at Shoes Your Mood. I handle: all the concept work, the image of the brand, the events, delivery process, the strategic part of business, control of the money, and the production control. It’s the best way to learn everything quickly, including ways we can improve. I’m enjoying it a lot!
What does the word sustainability mean to you? Sustainability means being able to work without overusing limited natural resources. All businesses have to strive for sustainability and being an asset to society.
Does the business do anything special to promote sustainability? Yes! We work with local people in an effort to promote the economy in Portugal and to sustain the community. All of our materials are made in Portugal close to the factory, so this leg in process is adding less pollution to the environment in regards to the travel distance for transporting the materials to the factory. And, we are conscious not to use any toxic glues in our products.
Describe your typical customer. Our typical customer is a spirited person who wants to be unique and enjoys wearing different footwear everyday; someone who appreciates new ideas and Portuguese-made shoes. We don’t have a type in terms of age, but we have a way-of-thinking type. Age is all a state of mind.
What’s new this season? This summer season we have one model with 10 colors and 16 new patterns of moods. We have colors for every taste: eccentric, classic, elegant…and the moods have Aztec, Inca, Indian, geometric and flower inspiration. The next collection comes out in April. We will also have monthly special editions of moods.
What are your short-term and long-term goals for Shoes Your Mood? We aspire to be a lifestyle brand. We plan to extend our mood products and expand our market. We are already starting to open international markets such as Spain, Italy, France, Belgium and Holland, eventually wanting to be all over Europe. Ultimately our goal is to head to the United States and Australia too because those are epicenters for lifestyle brands.
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