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My granny always used to say that you could judge a man by his shoes. On Saturday mornings as a child, I remember her making a list of errands to run – greengrocers, butchers, and occasionally the cobblers to have her shoes re-heeled or fixed. I’m 39 – and I’ve never been to a cobbler. I’ve always thought of the cobblers as an outdated idea – why fix something when you can simply buy a new pair on the high street for probably the same price as a repair?
In fact, sorting out our shoe cupboard in the hallway at the weekend was quite a somewhat shameful relief when I found 11 pairs of shoes that the Jones family would be parting with. We tend to hoard them somehow and cleaning out felt liberating for me – until the mister started rooting through the bag, interrogating me as to why I was throwing them away.
Too small [Jensen’s], too big for the next boy down [Lyoto’s], too worn down to be seen in public [Gavin’s], too smelly [I think they might have been mine – but in my defence they were in that state from husky walking in the fields]…and too “what was I thinking?” in one case [yes, those were mine] – overall, probably £300 of shoes. 11 more pairs of shoes going to a landfill site; what a waste.
I’ll buy shoes like people buy pints of milk – at least, I did before I had children. The mister on the other hand has always been quite the opposite. He has two pairs of shoes – three if you count the shoes he wore for our wedding. He has sports shoes and everything-else shoes. He wears these shoes until they are completely dead – and then some. He wears them until they cannot survive another outing, and then he will casually mention that he needs some new ones. That time came about two months ago, but I was notified about a month ago when the upper actually parted company from the sole.
This time, whilst searching online for a new set of my husband’s usual choice in footwear, I accidentally stumbled across Po-Zu [Japanese for “pause”, pronounced poh-zoo] on Instagram and found the kindred shoe-spirit my husband was meant to be connected with.
Ethical. Sustainable. I read on. SHOES FOR LIFE.
We were very kindly offered a pair to try – and in retrospect I really should have asked for shoes for myself since I fell in love with these and these…and these – but everything about Po-Zu tells me that the mister should be wearing them and so, as he benefits very rarely from any review on our blog, I offered him the opportunity, hoping he would say no gracefully.
And so here they are. Made in Portugal, and guaranteed for 12 months. I’ve never, ever heard of a shoe being guaranteed before, but I love brands that stand by the quality of their products.
The shoes are similar and yet very different in terms of craftsmanship to the shoes the mister usually chooses. The upper looks exactly as I’d imagine, but the sole is very unique. Po-Zu call it a “foot mattress” – made of coconut husk and natural latex – and it feels like walking on air. Or on my bed. Again, I’m left wondering why I passed this opportunity over so happy my husband has the chance to experience such comfort.
His “Brisk” shoes are the new love of his life. I generally dislike the style of shoe he buys, but these are beautifully crafted, and the Po-Zu butterfly is imprinted repeatedly over the sole neatly and so there’s no huge trademark or label screaming at everyone. They’re just so unique, so special – and beautifully created at the hands of people who are treated fairly, work in a safe environment and are skilled in their profession. There is no guilt attached to those shoes, no exploitation – and no air miles.
The ethical promise Po-Zu have made is heartening, refreshing and speaks of a company which values morals over money, seeking to build a future by doing the right thing, making better choices – which isn’t always easy in business. Po-Zu aren’t just talking the talk, they’re walking it too – and now so is my husband.
Maybe more of us should judge ourselves by our shoes.
We were gifted these shoes in exchange for an honest review.
These are so cool! I had no idea these existed. What a neat gift idea and an incredibly money saving idea too! And they're pretty cool looking too. I'm all about sustainable products!
The range is just beautiful – and I don't feel guilty buying them either! I love well made shoes, they are so rare these days with all of the mass produced footwear on our high streets :/
Oh my gosh we go through so many shoes, I swear my son goes thru a pair every two months! I have never heard of a shoe being guaranteed that would be amazing. They look very stylish and comfortable as well!
You picked out some nice shoes for yourself. Your hubby's shoes look very comfortable, good for him to have new shoes and benefit from the sponsor post!
My hubby still takes shoes to be repaired when needed, when they are his favorite shoes. It's generally just to have them re-soled. I think he still has shoes from 18 years ago.
It was a pleasure to learn of Po-Zu. I enjoyed exploring their site.
I really love those shoes. I've never heard of this brand before. My brother would really enjoy a pair of shoes like this. The color and style are great. Your family is beautiful.
I have never heard of a shoe being guaranteed for 12 months! Sometimes I feel like I would be happy to have a pair of shoes that were guaranteed for 12 days (minutes with my kids!). It sounds like they are very comfortable too – I think you were VERY generous to let you hubby get to try these out!
Wow, these look like the coolest shoes ever. I have been trying to purge all of our extras lately too and my hubby always gives me such a hard time about it. Next time I will just do it on the sly. Thanks for the great product rec!
Wow this is awesome! I've never heard of the shoe brand before but it definitely sounds great! I love the red with black color pattern, very nicely made. The style of the shoe also looks great! That elbow stand is very impressive, he is awesome!! Thanks for sharing, looks like high quality footwear!
These shoes look really cool. I love the color combination of black and red and they look very comfortable. My husband is probably one of the hardest persons on earth to buy shoes for, but if he sees these, he'll fall in love with them.
What lovely shoes! My husband also tears through shoes like mad, but he has way more than two pairs – sneakers, work shoes, sandals, flip flops, boots, dress shoes…I swear, I think sometimes he is more fashion forward than I am!
These shoes are really, really cool looking! I like fixing the heels on my shoes and giving them new life. I try to buy good quality shoes to keeping them in good condition is important to me and makes them worth the investment.
Those kicks are pretty awesome, I think my hubby would love to rock a pair as well… I'll have to look into surprising him with a pair because he hates it when I buy him anything new!
You're not alone, Lauren! My husband is just the same!!