Designer Kristen Lombardi reportedly made her first pair of moccasins based on the inspiration found in a boy scout book that she checked out from her local library. Her label Manimal is the very antithesis of the mass-produced, sweat shop-made goods that proliferate the market, and follows a strictly artisan philosophy that ensures that no more than three craftspeople are involved in the creation of each piece.

However, Manimal is not just about moccasins, Lombardi also designs pouches, belts, necklaces and earrings from the suede leftover from constructing her Native American-inspired booties and flats. Oh, and did I mention that some of the moccasins are animal-product free and therefore vegan friendly?

Putting aside Lombardi’s emphasis on making items with an eco-friendly conscience, her designs possess an aesthetic beauty manifest in her incorporation of clever details, such as pastel tones, fringing, beading and triangle patterns. These moccasins are not to be confused with the scuffed and filthy slippers worn by the crazy old lady that you see on the bus.

Manimal’s spring looks have been eloquently captured by Lena Corwin and are available for purchase in the Manimal online shop.

April 23, 2010