TOMS Shoes is an American footwear company that is based in Santa Monica, California, which also operates a non-profit subsidiary, Friends of TOMS. The company was founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie, a business owner from Arlington, Texas. The company designs and sells lightweight shoes based on the Argentine alpargata design. For every pair purchased, TOMS will give a pair of shoes to a child in need.
TOMS Shoes was founded on a simple premise: With every pair you purchase, TOMS will give a pair of new shoes to a child in need. One for One. Using the purchasing power of individuals to benefit the greater good is what we're all about. The TOMS One for One business model transforms our customers into benefactors, which allows us to grow a truly sustainable business rather than depending on fundraising for sup
Founder Blake Mycoskie (whom TV viewers might recognize from The Amazing Race) attended high school at James Martin High School in Arlington, Texas. He was a member of the varsity tennis team. In college, he started a laundry service for college students. He later dropped out of Southern Methodist University and developed the concept for a shoe company while vacationing in Argentina in January 2006. Blake has said" I was sitting on a farm pondering life, and it occurred to me, 'I'm going to start a shoe company, and for every pair that we sell, I'll give a pair to someone who needs them'" Mycoskie took to wearing the local alpargata shoes. Alpargata shoes have been worn by Argentina farmers for 100 years. Recently, TOMS added a lace-up version of its shoes. These canvas or cotton fabric shoes are now manufactured in hundreds of styles and fabrics. The sole is constructed of rope or of rubber, depending on the type of shoe. Many styles of TOMS are vegan as well. After Mycoskie noticed the numerous children without shoes in the poorer villages, he returned to the United States and sold his online driver education company to self-finance the shoe company. The company name is derived from the word "tomorrow", and evolved from the original concept, "Shoes for Tomorrow Project".
In October 2007, TOMS Shoes received the People's Design Award, as determined by an online popularity contest by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and has been noted as a successful model of social entrepreneurship. Also in 2007, Blake was invited to speak along with President Bill Clinton at the Opening Plenary of the Second Annual CGI U Meeting. This meeting in Austin, Texas hosted over 1,300 students and activists from around the world. In February 2009 Mycoskie also spoke at the TED conference (Technology, Entertainment, Design), a meeting of peers including people such as Bill Gates and JJ Abrams. Blake has also visited the White House. On March 6, 2009 he attended a meeting with President Obama's Senior Administration with other business leaders to present viable solutions and ideas regarding U.S. economic policy. Specifically, he presented information regarding potential in the economic plan to support small businesses in the U.S. More recently, Mycoskie was featured along with the owner of Frontera Foods, Rick Bayless in a CNBC segment titled "The Entrepreneurs". Hosted by Donny Deutsch, the show highlighted the innovators' profiles and the stories behind their companies. On April 8, 2009, an AT&T commercial aired during the Master's Golf Tournament featuring TOMS Shoes. Directed by award-winning Bennet Miller, the piece is slated to run at least twelve weeks. It is the first time the AT&T mobile unit has displayed a real company.
I think the idea behind TOMS shoes is great! They are really trying to make a difference in the world one step at a time (pun intended) through fashion. It's wonderful that these shoes have really caught on as a major trend among hipsters. If I knew nothing about the concept behind these shoes though and caught sight of them, I would probably hate them. Frankly, I think they're kind of ugly. I am probably a horrible person for admitting this, but from … more
I have seen all the hype about TOMS Shoes, but have yet to get my hands on a pair (I know, save your gasps). I think they are a perfect pair for just about anything to achieve a casual, carefree vibe. Plus, they pretty much scream spring/summer, so what am I waiting for? I'm really digging the pale yellow Bridgeports. I picture wearing them with some white linen shorts and a breezy button-up for an extra preppy look. While the price is typically a … more
TOMS are quite comfortable, but they do shrink when they get wet, so be careful. That makes them hard to wash, though they get dirty very easily. I still love my TOMS, even if they are a little too tight.
If you haven't checked out TOMS Shoes' new Light Blue Bridgeport Linen Classics or the Red Newport Cordones, then you need to hit up the TOMS' Web Site right away! Wear them when you're walking to those summer classes you are inevitably dreading or when you're dancing to the harmonies of Dave Matthews Band at Bonnaroo this summer! The Vegan Classics now have funky and colorful patterns to pair with any floral or striped summer romper! And can you believe it? TOMS Shoes has a page … more
How can one be opposed to a company who is founded on the premise: with every pair you purchase, TOMS will give a pair of new shoes to a child in need. Buying shoes has become so ordinary and common for most women these days, that owning 30-40 pairs isn't uncommon. Yet, we never stop to realize that a young child in a developing country walks barefoot everyday, picking up diseases that ultimately will harm their body. TOMS has opened me eyes … more