Wildling shoes are minimal shoes. But what exactly does that mean? What makes this kind of shoe stand out? In a short blog series, we will be focusing on all the wonderful features that we consider to be the essence of a Wildling minimal shoe – from the material and the feel of the shoe to the (ecological) footprint it leaves on our planet.
When people try to describe what a Wildling feels like on their feet, lightness has a major role to play. Anyone who has worn conventional shoes for a while is often surprised at how light the new minimalist shoes are, and it takes a moment to get used to the new sensation. Three Wildling newbies describe their first encounter with their new companions like this:
“So light, it’s almost like they’re not there. ”
“On Saturday, fully dressed, I wanted to leave the house to go shopping and in my mind, I still hadn’t put on my shoes. Really, like being barefoot. ”
“It’s like flying – no, it’s better than flying. ”
As little shoe as possible, as much shoe as necessary
The thin, flexible sole and fabrics made of natural materials make Wildlings real featherweights. It can happen that when you get home, you actually forget that you still have your shoes on.
For all their lightness, however, even minimal shoes have an important task to perform: They need to protect the feet from cold and injuries. That’s why the outer materials and linings for Wildlings are chosen not only on the basis of their appearance, but also on their function and the feeling they create when they’re worn.
The models in the Spring/Summer collections are made of breathable materials like hemp or linen, which help to regulate the foot climate. The Tanuki models made from Japanese paper-based Washi material by Itoitex are particularly airy. Not only are they extremely lightweight, they are also water permeable, making them ideal for virtually any summer adventure.
Besides the outer fabrics made of wool, boiled wool, or robust cotton, the winter models also feature thermal linings that help to keep feet warm naturally in cold temperatures. The cozy hemp-flax fleece and the wool fabrics from our partner Nordwolle are the undisputed favorites.
Exploring the world with your feet
In addition to their light weight, the materials have another property that makes Wildling minimal shoes truly unparalleled: They are soft and flexible. This allows them to adapt not only to the individual shape of the foot, but also – together with the extremely thin sole – to the ground itself. Many Wildling owners report that they have suddenly become much more aware of the ground they walk on.
“We love to feel the ground and even the grass beneath our feet when we’re walking in Wildlings.”
At first, it’s somewhat unusual to be feeling the sticks and stones when you walk, but after a while, it’s really fun to explore your surroundings with your feet and feel different textures. A welcome side effect: The feet are given a massage with every step on uneven ground, and their circulation is greatly enhanced.
That means that Wildling minimal shoes not only feel wonderfully light, they also ensure that our feet are freer, and that we feel more. Thus, movement becomes an experience.
And since it’s always a bit tricky to put feelings into words, we’ll just let this video do the talking: :
Anna, Ran and the Wildlings