Musewear Flip Flops - How It All Began
In the fall of 2009, I read that keeping gratitude 'front of mind' was as easy as saying two words--thank you--when your two feet hit the floor each morning. I started the next day. I’ve always been an optimist, so it didn’t take long for me to be pulsed with positivity. One morning while walking with our dog Chutney, I had the idea that whispering words of gratitude, motivation or amusement to people, right before they walk out the door, would be a sure-fire way to start spreading an idea that matters: “You got another day, life is good, sweet and bittersweet, and always worth what you give it.”
Having lived several years in the tropics (Hawaii, Vieques, Singapore), I’d become accustomed to the habit that the last thing you do before leaving home is put on your flip flops, (known variously as Zoris, slippers, sandals and thongs.) When I got home from that walk, I took a look at my assorted pairs and thought how fun it would be to write a mini-mantra on the footbed so all day I’d be wearing a secret weapon, ready to share it or keep the satisfying inspiration to myself. Musewear Flip Flops were born that day, though it would take many months and minds to bring it to you today.
My husband Michael Franco and I had been looking for a way to “give back” a bit of the blessings we’ve enjoyed in life. Because flip flops are worn the world over we knew them to be functional, affordable, durable and capable of carrying more than a logo. They carry millions of people millions of miles every day. If we were going to design a new version of the tried-and-true, it had to help people AND the environment or it wasn’t worth doing. We made sure the content we cared about--the words on Musewear Flip Flops--connected to things worth caring about. Check out How We Help - it’s our favorite part of this whole endeavor. We want it to be one of the main reasons you buy Musewear Flip Flops today and why you tell others about us. When you wear it, you share it, and buying a pair today supports some of the many solutions desperately needed on this cherished planet we call home.
We also knew we wouldn’t be comfortable producing Musewear in the typical third-world sweat shop with unacceptable environmental and human conditions – we had to do better. We spent a full year working with Martin Kunz of The Fair Trade Corporation, a company producing 100% natural rubber flip flops and sports balls. (Kudos to Martin for all his support – check out Ethletic flip flops.) After a year of samples and ideas swapped, natural “tapped-from-the-tree” rubber turned out to be an unstable product for the complexity of the designs on Musewear Flip Flops. Our search ended when we found a supplier in Brazil with a green policy we can live with, excellent worker conditions, and a recyclable product - the super cushy, made-for-living-in Musewear Flip Flops we’re wearing as we write this!
So why Zodiacs?
Why not! Who hasn’t peeked at their horoscope when paging through a magazine? Astrology is a little intriguing and actually inspiring to some. When people embrace what's good and honest about themselves, they tend to live good and honest lives. That inspires us. SunSignSoles reminds us that the whole concept of zodiac signs is ancient and somehow modern, there’s never been a war waged over them, and most of all, they’re fun, which is exactly what Musewear is meant to be. The Walk The Talk and Wit Flips quote lines were with us from day one, long before we even considered getting into zany zodiacs, and the more people we talk to, the bigger these lines grow. QuoteVoteWin will be a place where you can soon make a suggestion or add your vote for the next batch!
Our designers brought our vision for Musewear Flip Flops to life, and we’re indebted to their collective creativity. We surveyed family and friends, we made more than a few desperate phone calls to our earliest supporters of the idea and in the end we took the plunge to bring you something that inspires you to have fun, be bold, think differently, give an awesome gift, do the right thing, play hard, walk softly…Wear Your Self Out.
It started with two words, and two words keep us grounded daily: Thank You.