I love hearing about new brands, as they’re often started by people with a real passion for what they’re doing. Baabuk is a Swiss company started by a couple who love wool and wanted to recreate the Russian ‘valenki’ boots that they had been given as a gift. The result was a stylish pair of slippers (you can see those here), which they got off the ground with a Kickstarter project. Kickstarter, if you haven’t already heard of it, is a way of raising money to get your great idea off the ground, with the opportunity to back even a small amount of money. In return, you get something nice yourself. Cool, eh?
Baabuk’s new project is these gorgeous wool sneakers. They don’t just look good, they have all sorts of added bonuses because of the way they’re made. For starters – and I’ve spoken about this before – wool is a natural material that lets your feet breathe and adapts to your body temperature, so these trainers will keep your feet warm in the winter and cool in the summer. They are also antibacterial, so you can wear them without socks and they won’t get smelly (they were thoroughly tested and there was no pong), although if you do need to wash them, you can just pop them in the washing machine, no problem.
There are two models to choose from. The first (above) takes its name from the project – the Urban Wooler – and is a running shoe style. It comes in four colours – black, grey, purple and red. It’s quite unusual to see a trainer of this shape in a natural material like wool and I really like them. The details on the laces are really cool, too – they’re elastic and just knotted at either end so you don’t actually need to do them up or undo them. They retail at €120, and you’ll need to add €20 for shipping.
The second style (above) – which I am wearing at the top – is more of a sneaker with a rounded toe and comes in grey, navy or pale blue with bright coloured laces. Having actually tried these out on my own feet, I can tell you they are dreamy! The wool lines the entire shoe so it feels a bit like you’re wearing slippers. And not only do you not need socks because they don’t smell, but they don’t rub, either. My problem area is always my boney heel, but the back of these shoes is so soft and malleable that they don’t dig in at all. They also retail at €120 BUT….if you fancy backing the campaign, you can get a pair for yourself that way AND save money. For example, if you put forward €100 to back the project, you get a pair of trainers, saving €20. If you’d rather pledge less money, €50 will get you some slippers. €330 will get you two pairs of trainers and two pairs of slippers. You can read the full details about the Kickstarter here. It started yesterday and you have until mid November to bid, after which point your trainers will go into production and you should receive them in March.