Being an ethical shopper or vendor allows you to be a part of something far greater than yourself. Shopping ethically helps reduce our carbon footprint, practice gratitude, preserve our planet and be responsible with our resources. But, for us here at Ixchel Triangle, another amazing benefit to being an ethical vendor is that… we are not the only one! There are tons of amazing ethical vendors and brands that are doing incredible things for humanity and our planet, as well as creating beautiful, quality products.
As part of our new “Ethical Brands We Love” series, today we introduce to you our friends at Avarcas USA! They create their signature shoe, “Pons”, which are ethically made by hand with sustainability and longevity in mind. You can check out a short video on how they are handcrafted here!
We love that all (really, all!) the materials used for this shoe are locally and ethically sourced in Spain. The Pons workshop in Ciutadella is owned and operated by the third-generation of the Pons family and employs about a dozen local craftspeople.
The Meaning Behind the Name
Avarcas—also known as abarcas and Menorquinas— are a traditional footwear of Menorca, Spain. Menorca is dry and hot in the summertime. The first avarcas were created over a century ago for farmers working its arid land. Crafted from all-natural leather and recycled tires, they were designed to keep farmers’ feet dry, comfortable, and protected. Pons Classic style most closely resembles these earliest avarcas. The eco-friendly style has a sole made exclusively from recycled tires. All Pons avarcas – for women, men, and children– pay homage to the authentic Menorcan avarca while serving as a go-to accessory to all those who love enduring style.
About the Owners
As told on the Avarcas USA website, the story of Noelia Pahissa and her husband Jose Fuentes highlights how you really can turn an idea into a reality. Noelia moved to California from Barcelona in 2004 with Jose, who had accepted an engineering position in San Diego. Among many packed possessions were a few pairs of avarcas, which both Noelia and Jose grew up wearing. Wherever they went people complimented their avarcas. It didn't take Noelia long to realize there was an unmet demand for the Spanish product in the U.S. market.
The San Diego-based couple are co-founders of the Avarcas USA label, working exclusively with PONS to bring the authentic artisan sandals to sustainable-minded Americans. In just a few months the Avarcas USA brand’s popularity has spread across the nation. Noelia and Jose are extremely grateful to all those who believe in supporting the art of traditional shoemaking.
We are so thankful for people like Noelia and Jose and their vision, creativity, and dedication to creating ethical products. Stay tuned for more info on other ethical brands we love, and maybe even a giveaway or two! ;)