Individually made by fifth generation shoe makers in Sweden, Nina Z clogs are a nod to the past with a classic design inspired by styles of the 70s and 80s. Now available conveniently in stores and online in three new styles for spring/summer 2012, these sustainable kicks boast a timeless aesthetic, which means they can be worn any old time of year, and even with--gasp--socks.
Hand craftsmanship makes these kicks stand out. "The uneven staples, non-polished wood and ever evolving color nuances in the leather are all part of our “raw” design concept," the designer told TreeHugger. "They are a showcase to the craftsmanship dedicated to each individual pair and production. Prices range from $155 for sandals to $245 for boots.
Nina Z clogs are made with European leather, European Birch and Alder wood, grown according EU standards, recycled rubber, and staple nails. They are classic and true to traditional design, which is inspired by Nordic simplicity. Modern influences emerge this season with three new styles; the designer shares her inspiration, below.
Anna is for any Swedish teacher, mother, friend, or woman who dared to wear socks with her sandal clogs. Katarina is inspired by a good friend and journalist who, like the shoe, hybrids between Stockholm-New York. Agneta is simply named after one of the ABBA original mamas, Agneta Fältskog; the higher, 3 1/2-inch platform heel is inspired by the original platforms so often worn by Agneta on stage.
Swedish Hasbeens have become synonymous with Swedish clogs. To assume the popular brand is the only maker of these timeless kicks is limiting. "It’s like the difference between a pair of True Religion and Rock and republic jeans," designer Nina Ziefvert told us, when asked how Nina Z compares to their popular competitor. "They are both denim pants, but with different design characteristics." Good point.
Though made in Sweden, Nina Z clogs are the product of a local independent designer who sells her handcrafted shoes at hipster-favorite, the Brooklyn Flea Market in Williamsburg and Fort Greene each weekend. This fact alone kicks the shoes' coolness factor up a few notches. Beat that, Swedish Hasbeens.