Welcome to the latest range of products from Vegetarian Shoes.
We have come a long way since Veggie Shoes first started in 1990. When I started the business back then (that's me in the photo) I made all the shoes by hand. In fact, originally I only made one style - a basic lace up shoe.
I had started to teach myself to make shoes four years earlier after leaving Art College. I was inspired to hear that in parts of Africa, car tyres were recycled into soles. This got me thinking and soon I was making shoes out of anything I could lay my hands on, but being veggie I didn't want to use leather.
Then I made an exciting discovery, -a synthetic Microfibre material used for yachting upholstery. It looked and felt like supple leather, but was 'breathable', unlike other plastics. After some experimenting, I realised that this was what I had been looking for, and Vegetarian Shoes was born.
The range of styles quickly grew, as well as shoes I made boots, sandals and belts from this new fabric.
Everything was made to order and as the word spread I got busier and busier to the point where I could not make the things fast enough! So I took my material to a footwear factory to get them to make shoes for us. Now I had a stock that I could mail-order to veggies and vegans all over the country!
Nowadays, I no longer make shoes. (which I do not miss, as it was blooming hard work !). Most of our shoes are made-to-order for us, exclusively to our specification in European and English factories, including one established as a co-op in 1881!
Vegetarian Shoes is still a small business. We still operate out of our Gardner Street Shop and nearby office. We now send shoes all over the world and a growing number of stores carry a selected range.
Our Gardner Street shop in Brighton (whilst temporarily closed due to Covid 19) is normally open Monday and Tuesday 10am - 6pm, Wednesday 1pm - 6pm, Thursday to Saturday 10am - 6pm, most Sundays 11am - 5pm and closed on Bank Holidays.
If there is something you specifically want, please phone ahead (Shop: 01273 685685, Mail order: 01273 691913) to check stock.
If you're planning to come and visit us at our shop click here for a printable map. - Courtesy of Multimap
I hope you find something you like!
Robin Webb (Vegetarian Shoes)
The story behind the Veg Shoes shop
an interview (July 2019)