I just adore TOMS, simple and stylish, these canvas shoes are a sartorial staple in my closet and I wear them nearly every day. Besides being a great addition to any wardrobe the TOMS wearer also shows a charitable side when slipping these on, because for every pair purchased, a pair of TOMS is delivered to a child in need. TOMS have been delivered to children in Argentina, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Rwanda, South Africa, the United States and more, and the company is expanding to include eyewear and apparel too.
TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie first visited Argentina while competing in the second season of The Amazing Race with his sister in 2002. He returned there on vacation in January 2006, where he noticed that the local polo players were wearing a form of shoes called alpargatas; a simple canvas slip-on shoe that he himself began to wear. The shoes have also been worn by Argentine farmers for hundreds of years and were the inspiration for the classic style of TOMS shoes.Later in the trip he was doing some volunteer work in the outskirts of Buenos Aires when he noticed that many of the children were running through the streets barefooted. Blake learned that the lack of shoes was a problem that had a serious impact upon these youth, threatening the ability of the children to go to school, prevent infection, and so forth. After discovering that a lack of shoes was a wider problem in Argentina and other developing countries than just this one community, he decided that he wanted to develop a kind of alpargata for the North American market, with the caveat that for every pair sold he would provide a new pair of shoes free of charge to the shoeless youth of Argentina and other developing nations.
I got together with Saratoga Paint & Sip Studio to host a TOMS Style Your Sole party, where we will order plain white canvas TOMS in any size you choose (kids sizes too!) and have a big party painting them together on Thursday, May 23rd. The talented artists at Paint & Sip will help us all create something really unique and special, and it’ll be a really fun (and stylish) way to help provide shoes for kids in need. For every pair purchased a pair will be donated. There are only a few spots left for the party so snap them up now before it is sold out! Click right here to register and don’t forget to put your size in. Need inspiration? Click here for some cool images from a Style Your Sole Party and see the images below to get the ideas going. You can put a quote on your TOMS, a character, make them abstract, minimalist, whatever YOU want, make it your own. There will be some special surprises that night too, you won’t want to miss them, see you there! xoxo