Free shipping on all orders over 49$ for orders in USA
As we evaluated our product line we decided to add a sole option to some of our popular styles. After researching and some trial and error we ended up finding Vibram soles to be the best option. We chose Vibram due to the years that Vibram has been soling shoes around the world. Our sandals with soles are made here domestically using vintage sandal making equipment. We cut the Vibram soles and glue them on using low v.o.c glue. This process is time-consuming but we like using the abandoned machinery from companies who moved to the east. Throughout the last 10 years, we have gone through many different soling bottoms and are quite happy to the point where our research has led us. If you want to learn more about the decisions and headaches of working with soles, deciding on soles, gluing soles, etc you can read about it in our blog, “The Road to More Sole”.
We make almost all of our research and development public because the sharing of information is a necessity for people to survive in the world. You never know when someone is going to suggest something that we never thought of, or maybe someone gathers some information from us that helps them out. At the end of the day, we are trying to make a better place for all of us.
Update 2023- we have begun using some of our own designed partly recycled soles, so both are now available.
About the rope... we make the rope in North Carolina and it is partly reclaimed polypropylene cord. We found the polypropylene to be the best and most consistent option for making quality sandals. This rope is colorfast and super durable. Basically it is one of the strongest ropes known to humans. When we look at environmental impact, one of the most important things to look at is durability. That is why we make the best rope and do not cut any corners. Durability is sustainability.
"why don't you use hemp?" if I had a dime for every time we heard that we would still never get close to our original investment in trying to make our sandals with an organic fibre like hemp, jute, and cotton. I mean really, do you not think we tried that? We found through a lot of expense and trials that these fibres didn't work well as rope for shoes, at least not the way we wanted them to function.
We found the poly cord to last long, durable, functional and light. We did a lot of research on this material to figure out its environmental impact and our impact and decided it to fit with our morals. Here's a brief analysis of the material you can look at.
We of course look at all our footprint, especially being a sandal company. We stared right away figuring out what to do with our scraps: bags, purses, leashes, rope art; so we don't put any material into the land fill.
And recently this year 2023, we have begun working with a recycler who can take all off our little scraps that we can't use and remake them into other products- which will be coming in November 23.
It was our desire to create a product where there was virtually no waste. We are almost there! About 90% of our waste can be recycled into other products (thank you No Scraps Left Behind!).
Excessive packaging is just worthless. When you receive your sandals they are in a USPS mailbag and tied together with a string. There is no “shoebox”, which we feel is a waste of both money and cardboard. We have a sizing/info tag attached to the sandal. That’s about it. We do what we have to appease our shipping needs and requirements by shipping agencies and nothing more. If you order a bunch of sandals they might come in any kind of box we can find to use, so if it looks like your box has been around the world a few times or homemade- it might just be. We all have enough shoe boxes from when we were kids with odds and ends in them, I don’t think we need anymore.
Our future goals and recyclables of used sandals. When our volume reaches an amount where it makes sense to attempt re extrusion project we are on it. We got a long way to go for that.
When we introduce new products evaluate environmental impact, energy conservation, and fun!
We use domestically grown and sewn certified organic cotton, where we can. As a world, we now know a better way to farm organically. Organic farming eliminates the use of herbicides, toxic defoliants, and synthetic fertilizers. Organic farming is a nontoxic way to farm; which in return helps protect our future generations and our planet. This is also sustainable farming. Promoting a positive future outlook. Now some of our t-shirts use RPET (recycled plastic bottles) and from time to time we try out other fabrics. The fabric will be listed on each T-shirt. Currently, we are in love with the RPET/organic cotton mix shirt that is super soft and breathable. When you buy one of our shirts, we hope you are bringing smiles to people who read the positive messages on the shirt! You’ll also be joining us in raising positive vibes, and wearing art from old photography- thankfully those years in the darkroom weren’t wasted!
“BE the change you want to see”
The ultimate goal of “sustainable cotton” is to move sustainable production, manufacturing and use practices throughout the cotton value chain in order to create a healthy and profitable industry for growers, their communities, manufacturers, retailers and users of all cotton products.
The conventional cultivation of cotton leads to massive environmental and health problems. Around the world, more toxic insecticides are used on cotton than on any other crop. A sustainable alternative is the certified organic cultivation of the “white gold”. The farmers have only a chance to convert their production into controlled organic cultivation of cotton if there is sufficient demand for organic cotton. Although laborious in the beginning, the conversion is worthwhile. We want to help increase the demand for organic cotton.
We believe side projects are important for keeping things fresh and creative. As humans, most of us have the drive to keep moving forward. We strive to always expand and create consciousness, art, and connection along the way. Side projects can be a great conduit for this but it is a delicate balance at the same time making sure to not over extend or create complications for your main focus.
Once we figured out how to successfully add soles to the rope shoes, we put our people and old time machinery to use. We put our heads together, and with the Nomadic desire to create something new or improve on what’s already there, we started playing around with materials and other types of footwear. A much smaller step, and more for fun and experiments than anything else, but through some creativity we have come up with some stuff that is pretty cool. Available on a slightly smaller scale than the rope shoes that we have been doing for well over a decade, these side projects are fun and handcrafted. They are available at times, and not available at others, and vary in materials and colors. Thanks for supporting our side projects as it keeps us mentally stable, or as mentally stable as can be expected…
The Ecolyte Sandal
What is up with Ecolyte sandal? Where did that come from? This was the first “other” type of sandal we made. It looks way different from your typical sandals. Way different. Many people like the flip flop style sandal, people asked us for a flip flop style sandal. So, we thought. Why not, Nomadic state of mind needs a new project? We make excellent sandals, we can make a different kind of sandal, and we can make that sandal kick ass; and after learning how to use vintage sandal making machinery for our rope soles, we had the place and know-how. So we interviewed and tested other “flip flop” sandals out to see what we liked and didn’t like. A fun project, we always need new projects - a curse of sorts. After finding what we liked about a flop sandal and what all of our buddies liked about the different ones they had, we went to work with some friends.
First the material, ok that was obvious – lets pick out something that is quality (quality always has to come first) and comfortable, and keep in line with a rope technology. Hemp. Next was finding the most comfortable strap for the top of the foot. We tried a bunch and eventually found one we liked. Then the foot bedding. We tried out many hemp and hemp mix fabrics. We found the 100% hemp canvas works the best. Then for the innards….soft, squishy but firm arch support. Then the bottom. We wanted non-slick, something that grabs. We landed on Vibram… constructed here domestically. So, we have done some variations on the ecolyte now, using some faux furs made out of hemp, some recycled webbing, and old sails from boats traveling around the world! These sandals went through some changes and additions over the last few years, and you will start seeing some new materials being used soon, as we look at upcycling some other materials.
The Sail Flop
Chris and his dad's love for sailing come out in this project. The essence of this project is expressed as this:
those same sails that carried wind,
that sailed people around the globe,
is now up-cycled into an authentic sandal-
so your feet can now continue the journey,
with the feeling of soft durable once used sails
lining the bottom and the top of your feet,
a super soft eva in the middle,
and nonslip Vibram sole on the bottom.
made in our Florida, USA laboratory.