The Leguano Production Story
We often get asked about the price of our products – and yes, we totally get it, they are at the higher end! The fact is, that unfortunately, you get what you pay for, especially when it comes to clothes, and shoes.
Leguano was founded in 2004, the brainchild of long-distance runner, and journalist, Helmuth Ohlhoff – in Sankt Augustin Germany. Helmuth’s vision was not only to create a running shoe that supported the natural movement and development of the feet, but also, to create a shoe of superior quality, and produce them in Germany.
Leguano were not designed by a fashion designer, but rather, by professionals in sport, who knew first-hand the down sides of standard running shoes on their health, and sporting activities. The experience and expertise that has gone into their design is so far beyond your average shoe.
A large number of shoes on the international market are mass produced, and the goal is to keep costs low, and production levels high. Helmuth blazed a new trail, re training local people in the art of hand crafting, and sewing, to realise his dream - of a more sustainable, high quality, artisan product. Hand made takes time, precision, and our workers are paid a fair wage!
Leguano shoes have been hand made in Germany since 2004, and still are to this day, in a town called Buchholz in the Westerwald, a region between Cologne and Frankfurt. Their materials are also sourced in Germany. We all know that ‘German made’ is synonymous with ‘well made’ – they are market leaders in quality production.
Many models of the Leguano are made of a specially selected textile, this is woven in one fluid piece, eliminating unnecessary seems and disturbance to the feet. They are flexible, breathable, but they are also humidity resistant.
Most of our shoes are made from microfibre – a combination of polyamid, elastan, lyocell and/or polyester. Some, the Demin for instance, include large percentages of cotton (70%).
The sole is our own patented design, made from LIFOLIT, a rubber composition. This is the only element of the shoe that is made by machine, for ultimate durability. They are non-slip, super flexible, and resistant to modern daily life.
High quality design, high quality materials, handmade, and all of the materials sourced within Germany, this is their ethos, and it is a commendable one!
One of the major milestones in the Leguano story was the opening of the first barefoot shoe store in Bad Zwischenahn in 2013. Now there are 180 stores throughout Germany, and providers throughout the EU and worldwide – from Ireland to China, and Australia!
This just goes to show the growing movement toward wearing barefoot shoes, and the unquestionable success of the brand.
Now several years into development, Leguano shoes give the wearer their full range of motion, whilst still providing year-round protection from the elements, and dangers of modern life. The upper material is designed to hold in heat, whilst not causing any restriction to movement. They are also machine washable, so no need to fret about messy excursions!
What price do you put on your physical health? This is really the question we should also be asking ourselves – what will years of back pain, hip pain, knee pain, cost you in the long run?
We have several articles in the blog that go into more detail about the benefits of barefoot shoes, and I would urge you to give them a read.
They are suitable for everyone, from childhood to old age. They are also suitable for many foot shapes and sizes, due to their flexibility.
Whether walking the dogs, climbing mountains, doing yoga, parkour, or just the daily shop – Leguano stands up to the challenge, every time. Instead of needing 10 pairs of shoes for different activities – and having to replace them on a regular basis – your Leguanos are a sound investment piece, that will also protect your physical well-being.
Our production story is one of expertise, ethical thinking, and a focus on health and well-being, and personally, I think they are worth every penny (and my once cranky knees, well, they are in full agreement!).