Hi, my name is Tom, I'm 24 and I'm the owner of Heart & Sole!
I started Heart & Sole because I want to do something special, I want to provide the best products with the best customer service.
All of our products are exclusive to Heart & Sole, whatever you buy will be at a maximum one of 20 other pairs to ever come into the UK.
Here is top class cheesy press shot for you!
We currently have a showroom located in Stone, Staffordshire, and our website which you're currently on, lovely isn't it!
Our products are of the highest quality and design and we sell a service along with the shoes, we're always at the other end of the phone and ready to make your experience a special one.
2018 will bring changes to the showroom, more amazing styles and big events just around the corner. We look forward to sharing it with you.
History Of Heart & Sole
I’ll start this off by stating that I am incapable of being concise, so enjoy!
This all came about during a conversation with my mum, she was saying how it was a shame that so many shops were closing and that no-one seemed to sell anything different.
I worked at a company that dealt with fashion stores on a daily basis (check them out and the fantastic people behind it right here!)so I suggested we look at a few of their websites as there must be one of them that would cater for somebody after something colourful, unique, and comfortable.
After going through some of them it was pretty clear that everyone was quite happy to sell the same thing as each other, so that kind of stuck in my mind that there must be so many things that haven't been looked into yet.
When I started to do some research clearly no-one imported from Latin America, so I thought there had to be some companies that manufactured something different that we could do with in the UK!
I found a company called Andrea and started looking at their styles, as you can see below they were new and vibrant and exactly what we need.
Then it was time to try to contact the company, it took a bit of work (all of their switchboard and support systems were in Spanish and I am definitely not fluent) but eventually I got through to someone who could speak English.
His name was Francisco and he would go on to be my primary contact there until I went to Mexico to meet the company in person.
After doing some research I found out there is a footwear exhibition in León, Mexico. León has been manufacturing footwear since 1645 and has over 3,000 manufacturers to a population of 1.8 million so it was the perfect place to go! SAPICA which is for all Mexican footwear manufacturers and even global names attend, it's the second largest footwear exhibition in all of the America's. This exhibition takes place in March so it was time to plan a trip!
While speaking to Andrea it came to light that their head offices were in León, so it was the perfect opportunity to meet them too.
I organised getting some samples shipped to the UK, time was running thin and they turned up the week before we went!
Here are the images of the samples, the moment they arrived and I checked them over with a group of potential customers I knew that there was something special here.
When we arrived in León it was very different to a tourist location, not many people spoke English and it was clear the area was focused around manufacturing.
Mexico in all was amazing; here is the link to the gallery with all the images from the trip. You don’t expect to find the best Italian food you’ve ever had in the middle of Mexico!
Whilst there we got into discussions with Andrea for exclusivity to their brand in the UK, and also met with a company called Denver Boots who hand make leather boots and they are embedded with Swarovski Crystals!
Here is an image from when we met with Andrea, from left to right there’s Francisco, me, my mum, and Christian, who would become our contact there for quite a few months.
Deciding on what products to import was quite difficult as Andrea have over 6000 ranges, I knew I wouldn’t be able to bring it all across yet so I decided on a number of lines and then got in some help to veto the styles.
I had hoped to open sooner in the year but there was quite a lot of unexpected red tape to get through before the products could be exported to the UK, but once that was sorted we were quite truly in business!