Almost exactly three years ago, the idea was born to found our own sneaker label in Berlin. Then as now, we were driven by the idea of designing shoes that are not only timeless and chic, but above all produced sustainably and fairly. Tight and carefully sewn, not glued from the assembly line.
With our first, minimalist but at the same time stylish collection, we were able to implement our ideas quite successfully and are super grateful for all those who accompanied and supported us. Thank you, thank you, thank you, if you are part of it and are part of our dream.
In interviews we are often asked who is the typical kulson customer. Whether more men than women buy our shoes or in which age group our customers are to be found. We are pleased to be able to reply that the “classic” kulson customers do not exist. Because every customer is just as individual as our handmade shoes. What our customers have in common is a conscious consumer behaviour, in which ecological factors also play a role. From people looking for daily sneakers, comfortable office shoes or even suit shoes, everything is there. We are making great efforts to serve everyone and are therefore expanding our range of shoe sizes this year to the EU 48 shoe size, starting at EU 36.
Otherwise, we don’t have 0815 customers, which is also reflected in the commitment we’re getting, because feedback, they say, is a gift and we got a lot of it, luckily we surf the same wave and the most common feedback was: More colors please!
Your wish is our command and we are very much looking forward to the summer colours 2020, six new favourites have been created in the usual Scandinavian style, whether for the office, everyday life or in the evening to go out, with the new colour palette is the right shoe on the foot for every occasion.
But since we are not ONLY concerned with appearances, but as in real life also count internal values, we have set ourselves not only new colors for 2020 but also another goal: to make our unisex sneakers even more ecological and greener (and by that we do not mean the color).
After many discussions, prototypes and negotiations, we are particularly pleased that in addition to the footbed, 70% of the sole is now produced from recycled material and that we can thus contribute an even greater part to environmental protection. We also recycle our shipping boxes and use them several times whenever shoes come back. We will continue to deal with the topic of green hosting and want to motivate people to consume more consciously.
Of course, a finished product also wants to be purchased and since our marketing budget as a start-up is still relatively low, we focused heavily on our online shop at the beginning. Then also opened pop-up stores at 2 locations in Berlin and were thrilled by the crowd, that led to the fact that we decided to negotiate with other stores about the marketing of our Tennis Retro Style sneakers. In Berlin you could test and buy our sneakers in four stores.
At this year’s Fashionweek, we had a lot of business at the booth and the topic of “sustainability” was very much at the forefront. In addition to many interesting conversations, we were also able to make tangible deals with online marketplaces and physical stores. Then came corona…
At the very beginning of the Corona crisis, we thought “good that we are producing in Europe, that we have short supply chains and that we do not source glued shoes from Asia, but handmade shoes from Portugal” We were optimistic that we could conquer the shops in the summer with our new darlings. As we all know, however, the situation quickly worsened, all the shops had to close and so did our factory in Portugal. Consequently, the production of the new colours was also paused. Of course, this uncertainty is not lifted, but this uncertainty does not make it any easier to implement our plan to expand even further into the offline world of Germany this year, because many stores have quite different concerns and face major challenges (financially, selling off old collections, etc.).
The good news is that we have our current models in stock in Berlin, so at least online retail can continue, although the uncertainty in the population is already clear here and we are selling noticeably fewer shoes at the moment.
Despite the circumstances, we will do our utmost to achieve our sales figures, because an essential part of our mission is to donate 4% of the total annual turnover to charities that are committed to riding our seas of plastic. Last year we supported the following organizations and would like to do even more this year:
There is also an opportunity in every crisis and we are using the time to form further partnerships. In the future, we will not only make our sneakers greener, but, and now, for a change, we are really talking about the colour, also the earth. Active giving www.activegiving.de is committed to rewarding the sporting activity of your members. For each tracked sporting activity, a tree is planted, which we sponsor from kulson or other supporters. Even if we don’t offer classic sneakers or running shoes, we like the concept so much, because we believe that exercise is important for everyone and after all the devastating fires of the past few months our world, more than ever, depends on the help of the people. Here, too, every tree counts. We are happy if you share their great concept. The app is easy to use and really a win-win for anyone who likes to run or is currently reluctant to run. For the latter, this could change.
If our sneakers sweeten your everyday life, we are of course also happy about your reviews e.B. at google or utopia. Follow us on IG @kulsonstudios to be always up-to-date and to participate in great competitions.