Sydney Brown was born in Detroit, Michigan where her family lived close to an animal farm. She remembers hearing animals screaming all the time, which was upsetting to say the least. This is the time when she and her family decided to go vegetarian. She thought there was already enough suffering in the world to be yet another individual contributing to an animal abuse. Then Sydney was only 16. In an attempt to find her purpose in life she lived in Japan, established and sold her music label and in the end settled to create her eponymous design label. Vegan, sustainable and luxurious are the criteria that Sydney Brown shoes are associated with.
At Amberoot we are presenting her collection of shoes crafted from cork. The type of oak Quercus Suber is the leading environmentally friendly material. The tree helps to conserve soil and water while at the same time reducing greenhouse gases. Cork oak is also the only tree that can have its entire bark removed causing no harm to the tree. The same tree can be harvested every 9 years and live up to 200 years. Cork oak forests are also known to host some of the most important biodiverse ecosystems in the world. Thus you simply cannot go wrong by choosing cork!
For the shoe soles she sources natural rubber from the indigenous communities in the Amazon. The wooden heels for the shoes are carved from German PEFC certified beechwood.
Her passion for animal rights is present not only in an alternative to leather – cork material that she uses. Working with adhesive scientists internationally she also created a vegan shoe glue instead of the most commonly used pig-glue. All her shoes are also PETA certified. They are also handcrafted in a small factory near Porto, Portugal. By providing fair working conditions the brand guarantees that human rights are accounted for as well.
While once the brand only produced 100 shoes a month, Sydney Brown is now increasingly available internationally. Today it is much easier to have both – the peace of mind by contributing to the world positively while still having those eye catching looks.