Contributing Monkie Sarah Backhouse
Published on October 1, 2008
Want to wear armadillo? No? How about slip on some raccoon? Or my personal favorite, the beaver? No smirking… I’m talking about your feet. These are all styles of shoes by MINK, with animal names that are clearly tongue-in-cheek.
As a matter of fact, MINK’s custom designed “G” Shoe Line shuns leather and animal products all together, without sacrificing creativity or style.
LA-based model turned celebrity stylist turned designer, Rebecca Brough, started her strappy, sexy shoe line back in 2000 after traveling to Italy armed with only a handful of sketches. After scads of rejections, she managed to find a third generation artisan who was happy to handle small batches of labor-intensive non-leather shoes. MINK shoes are hand-stitched and created with materials like organic cotton, linen and denim. Vegetable resin made from a Para rubber tree was especially developed to bind the top of the shoe to its rubber, cork or wooden base. The entire production process takes 10 hours per pair.
The gamble appears to have paid off. Hollywood has fallen in love with MINK — A-list celebrities like Paris Hilton, Tyra Banks, Rose McGowan, Kirsten Dunst, Cristina Ricci, Alicia Silverstone and Natalie Portman happily fork out $355-$400 for a pair. They’re pricey, but more socially conscious than a pair of Jimmy Choos or Manolos.
So, feel free to embrace your inner hog, coyote or tuna without harming the real thing as you take a glamorous step forward in MINK.