Meet the Ethically-Made Shoes You’ll Want at the Core of Your Wardrobe

The shoe brand behind one of last year’s most successful ethical fashion crowdfunding campaigns is taking a noteworthy step into its next phase this week.

After raising more than double its campaign goal and reaching over $65K in November to start pre-orders for its artisan-made shoes, Massachusetts-based Adelante now offers its debut collection live on its site, where you’ll find five men’s styles and four for women – all of which are instant wardrobe staples.

With the rise in social awareness around fashion manufacturing and production, we’re seeing so many shoppers today looking for new ways to be good consumers by supporting brands that are ethical and have some form of commitment to social responsibility (we say some form of because what exactly constitutes ethical varies widely from person to person) while also being reasonably priced, and of course, excellent quality with great-looking products. Tall order, right? Adelante looks to be ticking off all boxes on the list.

Founded by Peter Sacco, Adelante shoes are handmade from full grain leather by artisans in Guatemala who are paid not just living wages, but what the company calls Living Well wages. It’s a new social impact model that provides pay for workers at a level that ensures they’re able to live a comfortable life based on the cost of living where they are. The model was enough to not only win fans during last fall’s Kickstarter campaign, but also to land Adelante the social impact prize from the Tufts 100K competition, hosted by Tufts University.

As for the shoes themselves, both men’s and women’s styles are the kind of classic, slightly vintage-inspired silhouettes that you can wear for any occasion, from the boardroom to the park, dinner out to your casual movie night with friends. And while Adelante shoes might look or feel like they would cost hundreds, they’re all under the $200 mark. What’s more, the brand backs up promises of transparency with numbers by posting a breakdown of its pricing on the site.

But that’s not the end of Adelante’s mission. Founder Peter Sacco says that the shoes are the beginning for a much larger objective: “If business shifts its objective from profit maximization to responsible profit, the private sector can become an unparalleled force for good.”

With Adelante, it’s looking like a win-win-win scenario for everyone – feet included.

Images courtesy of Adelante and (image 1) Emily Belz Photography (images 2-4) MonsterJazz and Je’ Amou Photography with styling by Bakert-Miceli Design. 



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