Ben, Co-Founder, CEO and driving force behind Effekt Footwear developed his vision and even found new Co-Founder as part of our last eBridge Sprint "Let's Get Real". Inspired by the medieval chemists who turned scrap metals into gold, their first collection uses 21st century alchemy to turn waste materials into sneakers.
Their first product, the Alchemy-X has been designed with three concepts in mind: use nothing new, facilitate positive actions and promote circular economy. While many brands are working on making new, low impact materials, Effekt Footwear has chosen to use waste materials to create highly desirable products.
Alchemy-X is hand made in Portugal from 90% upcycled material, including reclaimed ocean plastic, recovered footwear industry waste and recycled textiles. To keep materials cycling throughout the economy, they encourage customers to participate in our Effekt Collekt program where they take back and recycle worn Effekt sneakers with their suppliers to ensure sneakers stay out of our waterways and landfill.
For Effekt Footwear this is more than just footwear. Beyond the sneaker, this project is a social experiment to evaluate consumers acceptance of using waste materials to create highly desirable products.
The upper part is made from ocean plastic removed from beaches in Europe and the Mediterranean Sea. The team hopes that their footwear creates value from the largest waste stream threatening global oceans and ecosystems and encourage others to make products from these valuable and abundant materials. The eco-rubber in the sole is a blend of 70% waste materials that is collected from footwear factory floors and typically sent to landfill. The 30% new rubber is the only new material used in our sneakers but ensures the same strength as a brand new rubber sole while adding a sustainable touch to the minimalistic aesthetic.
Their purpose is to inspire product designer and producers to find value in the materials we throw away and encourage the consumer to begin a transition toward a low impact and circular lifestyle.
Effekt believes that the consumer is the most powerful force in the marketplace.
"The way you spend your money determines the business models that remain in the future. The linear cycle of take, make, waste can only take us so far and it is up to us to give waste materials a second life in our society. Consumption in and of itself is not necessarily a bad thing, but at break neck speed, completely unaware of the consequences is when we get into trouble. Life is about getting out and doing stuff, not only buying stuff and looking good. We are more than just a shoe brand, we are an extension of what really matters."
Support their Kickstarter campaign now!