our social mission

To work with our hands, to produce something of use and beauty brings a pleasure to any human.  Deep in us is the need to leave a mark in the world, to learn and develop skills over many years.  More than simply to earn a living, everyone wants to see the value in the results of their efforts, we all want meaning to our lives

Working in a shoe factory and producing shoes is a noble and vital effort.  We believe building a factory and filling it with workers we've  trained is what we want to do.

Due to our relationships and experience SHOE LAB NYC has an opportunity to help lift people from the inner cities or deep rural areas of the country with training and apprentice programs.    With creating a work environment filled with satisfying personal growth, production and camaraderie we have a template to build shoe factories across the country.

smaller is better

The concept of building huge factories with hundreds of people working in vast spaces is not what we are after now.  The photos are of the size of a larger factory with possibly fifty workers and can produce, from one thousand to three thousand pairs a day depending on the type of shoes in production.  A smaller facility, with four to six workers can produce fifty to two hundred pairs a day.  In both cases workers are trained to do a variety of tasks and are changing what they do often during the production cycle, sometimes performing four or five tasks in an hour.  Each task requires skill and attention to details in order to do the work well and produce a quality shoe.  The variety of skills and effort required will enrich the workers life and sense of self worth.  The eventual honing of the processes by each worker will shorten the time needed to produce a shoe, thus lowering the cost. 

SHOE LAB NYC is creating a school where shoe designers and shoemakers can learn the various aspects of shoemaking on state-of-the-art shoe producing machinery.  Once certified, some will return to their homes and open a small shoe factory.  The factory will produce a combination of shoe orders.  Some orders from SHOE LAB NYC's customers, receiving all the necessary prefabricated components needed for the order or original shoe designs created, manufactured and sold by the factories' owners directly to consumers and small retailers.  Mainly, the shoes produced would be for shoes to be shipped within their geographic area with resulting positive economic benefits.  

This process will eliminate various expenses which are added to the price of all imported shoes.  Eliminated will be the import duties and the accelerating costs of shipping products from overseas.  The final consumer receives greater value for the price paid and the carbon footprint within the process is smaller.

Ramon Tendero second generation Spanish shoe manufacturer


When design takes place in the facility which produces the shoes, both processes are enhanced.


Smart innovation comes from a shared goal and high quality standards maintained within an environment which enables the person doing the labor to interact with the producer of the machines and logistic systems.