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OUR METHOD

 groundz black shoe next to spread toe barefoot

 

The Foot

It all begins with the foot. Your foot was designed to be the shape that it is for a reason. Your feet are the base that supports the rest of your skeletal body - your knees, hips, back and torso. This anatomy requires you to spread your toes, grip, and receive sensory feedback from the ground, all of which allow you to develop proper, healthy gait, balance and natural movement.

We believe your shoe should fit your foot’s anatomy and not the other way around like much of contemporary footwear.

We set out to create not only an anatomically correct shaped shoe, but also one that’s made of all natural materials. We believe we have crafted a shoe that’s functional, healthy, natural, grounding, comfortable and stylish. Wearing an all-natural foot shaped shoes may take some time getting used to. They look different and feel a little different, but we are pretty confident that after giving your body a bit of time to adjust, you will never wear “traditional” shaped shoes again. Wearing foot shaped shoes will strengthen your feet, correct your posture and help in reducing foot, shin, knee, hip and lower back pain.
 

 

The Shoe

Our shoes are based on the Yemeni shoe that has 700 years of history and tradition, and are crafted by artisans whose trade has been passed down generation to generation. Using a unique hand-stitched sole construction and all natural materials, we took the classic version and redesigned it to incorporate a wide toe-box, a “zero-drop” flat thin sole, and a grounding copper plug. Our shoes’ unique construction allows your feet to breathe and disperse sweat, preventing odors, and can be worn with or without socks. The result is a beautifully made grounding shoe that's healthy, comfortable, flexible, versatile, yet durable and made to last for years.
 

Zero-Drop & No Toe Spring

Wide Toe Box

Thin & Flexible

No heel elevation or elevated toe box. Heels and toes are flat. For improved foot strength, body posture and gait. A foot shaped shoe. The widest part of the shoe is at the ends of the toes and not the ball of the foot. For toe freedom and natural stability. For natural movement, ground feel, improved grip and for building foot strength.

Zero-Drop & No Toe Spring

No heel elevation or elevated toe box. Heels and toes are flat. For improved foot strength, body posture and gait.

Wide Toe Box

A foot shaped shoe. The widest part of the shoe is at the ends of the toes and not the ball of the foot. For toe freedom and natural stability.

Thin & Flexible

For natural movement, ground feel, improved grip and for building foot strength.

We are passionate about our shoes because we understand the value they deliver and the benefits they provide. Our Clays are handmade in Europe with unmatched quality, craftsmanship and premium materials, which do not make them cheap to produce or to purchase, but considering they are the healthiest shoes in the world, we believe they are worth every penny.
 

The Construction

Clays are produced in small batches, by hand with each pair taking days to complete. We start with cutting and stitching the leathers that form the upper part of the shoe. The upper is then pulled over our proprietary last (mold). Lasting is the process of wrapping the leather uppers over the cast mold of a foot and gives the shoe its shape and fit. Clays are hand-lasted allowing the craftsman to form and mold the leathers perfectly and according to the nuance and malleability of the specific leather used.

 

Our last is unique in that it is shaped with:

 

  • Wide toe box – giving your toes freedom, “un-squishing” your feet and relieving bunions.
  • Zero drop and minimal toe spring - keeping the foot in a natural position, strengthening muscles of foot and legs, and so improving body posture and gait.
  • Grounding plug - that neutralizes electrical charges and may reduce inflammation, pain, stress, improve blood flow, sleep and more.
Next comes our buffalo vegetable tanned pliable sole that allows your foot to feel the texture of the ground, activating all the healing pressure points on your heels, arches, toes and especially the balls of your feet. The sole is then attached to the upper using an all natural traditional clay paste which is what we name our Clays after! Other manufacturers use synthetic glue for this purpose. We apply our natural clay not only to the sole, but also to the inner lining which further allows any build-up of static electricity to be discharged.

 

groundz shoe making collage

 

The edge of the sole is then cut by skillful hands to follow the perimeter of the shoe and refine its shape. Once the sole is applied, the upper and sole and insole are sewn together by hand using beeswax soaked cotton thread. This stitching makes the shoe incredibly durable and gives it its distinctive look. This process is unique to our style of shoe and differs from most modern shoes that are usually glued together. Our unique style of construction forms a shoe that will last a lifetime.
 

Materials

We wanted to craft a healthy shoe, a shoe that is made with all natural materials. No synthetic rubbers, plastics or fabrics that tend to age poorly, smell, and become less comfortable with time. We use premium quality, top grade leather that is thoughtfully produced, naturally tanned and will age beautifully with wear. Natural leather is imperfect and so none of our shoes are ever exactly the same. Each has its own unique signature that may comes in the form of color variances or small blemishes, all part of the charm.
 

 

We use 3 types of leathers to make our Clays:


The Upper, which is the top part of the shoe, made of cow leathers, primarily vegetable-tanned or semi vegetable tanned. Depending on the style, and going from softest to firmest, we use Suede, Nubucks and smooth leathers, all of which are durable, robust yet malleable to form and comfortable to wear.
The sole – This highly breathable Water buffalo leather, the sole of the shoe, made using a very traditional and all natural vegetable tanning process, provides the base of our shoe. This naturally anti-microbial, durable and comfortable leather will mold to your feet and keep them cool fresh and dry, preventing odor, whether you wear them with or without socks. Buffalo is porous and allows you feet to breathe and disperse sweat. Your shoes will never have any funky odors. 
The Lining – is the leather that is on the inside of the shoe and touches your foot. It’s a vegetable-tanned, all natural leather that is soft and gentle on your skin. We apply a layer of clay (no synthetic glue) between it an the upper, then sew the two together. A breathable layer that will guaranty no funky odors here!
 

Grounding

Our shoes are completely natural and have no synthetic insulating barriers between your foot and the ground. Leather is naturally conductive however it has to have a high water content to be truly conductive. Over time the leather will absorb natural moisture however to make our shoes grounding right off the bat, we’ve incorporated a copper rivet into them. Copper is an incredible metal that has been used by people across the world for millennia. Copper is a highly conductive, durable and antimicrobial and is attributed with many health benefits. The copper rivet we use in our sandals acts as a conductor of electron flow from the earth to your body through the soles of your feet. It makes our shoes genuinely grounding.
 

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