Culture Sustainable Fashion Gooc: Recovered Tires and Fabrics Footwear From a Vietnamese in Brazil By Paula Alvarado Writer T.E.A. Paula Alvarado is an Argentine journalist who wrote for Treehugger for 7 years. She continues to write about sustainability for various publications. our editorial process Twitter Twitter Paula Alvarado Updated October 11, 2018 Migrated Image Share Twitter Pinterest Email Culture History Travel Sustainable Fashion Art & Media Holidays Community These beautiful sandals from recovered tires are produced by Brazilian brand Gooc. Even though we've seen lots of designs with recovered tires, these ones are special not only because they're great looking, but also for the story behind them. Gooc was founded by Thai Quang Nghia, a native from Vietnam who was rescued from a small boat at high sea near South-East Asia by a Petrobras ship (Brazil's largest petrol company). With only 21 years old, the Vietnamese was taken to Brazil without speaking a word of Portuguese and soon found a home and a way to make a living. Keep reading and find many more pics in the extended...His company began with a series of unexpected happenings, informs an article published in the website Diario do Comercio: the family which had taken care of him broke and payed Thai Q. an amount of money they owed him with bags from their business. Apart from selling those door to door, the Vietnamese asked them to teach him how to make the bags. It was the beginning of the Domini Group (Grupo Domini in Portuguese), which now employs over 900 workers in its two factories in Sao Paulo and Bahia. Thai Q. grew in the bags business by direct selling via Avon catalogs, and in 2002, during a trip to Vietnam to visit family, he found inspiration in his roots to start a new business. He saw a Depp, which is a kind of sandal from tires that is typical in that country, and thought about producing those in Brazil with a philosophy based in the Vietnamese culture and with a green conscience. That was the birth of the Yepp brand, which then turned to Gooc and now involves many items from recovered tires and fabrics. Gooc's products are currently sold all over Brazil in a list of shops that can be found organized by State at the brand's website. Jamaican company Walk Good is the official distributor for the Caribbean, North America, Israel and Middle East. This firm runs an English website and sells some items via eBay until it finishes arrangements to sell in retail stores in the United States and Canada. In January, Gooc sandals were part of the Sundance Film Festival's Giving Suite. Find out more at Gooc's websites. Also, if you're interested in design with tires from Latin America, check Neumatica, from Argentina, and the work of Mexican designer Metztli Mancilla Hernandez, a.k.a. Mecha. ::Gooc (in Portuguese) ::Gooc English website Recovered tires sandal. Another model of tires sandal. Platform woman shoe from recovered vintage canvases. Bag from recovered vintage canvases. Purse from recovered vintage canvases.