The first Wildling Shoes spring/summer 2022 models are ready and waiting in the wings, beckoning us to dream of those longer, warmer days, of lush greenery and gentle spring breezes. Kicking off this season we have the models Yak, Kul, Manul, and Tanuki Kokoro, Saker and Tengri, together with Feather Plum, Feather Forest, and Feather Magpie. Let’s take a closer look at these new minimal shoes...
The Yak model (image: Wildling Shoes/Julia Zoooi)
As a mid cut, the Yak model is ideally suited for the transitional period between seasons. With a robust upper sporting a tweed look made from 100% recycled cotton, Yak is not only exceptionally resistant to soiling, this shoe also does its part to reuse existing materials and conserve resources. Yak is available in sizes for toddlers, children and adults.
The Kul model (image: Wildling Shoes/Julia Zoooi)
„Kul“ is the Kyrgyz word for river – and with its light blue upper made from certified organic cotton and European linen, that’s exactly what this minimal shoe brings to mind. This combination of materials gives it exceptional breathability while ensuring a pleasant environment for your feet. Kul is available in the Wildling Shoes online shop in sizes for toddlers, children and adults.
The Manul model (image: Wildling Shoes/Cherie Birkner)
Manul has a very purist feel to it, and that’s exactly what makes it so distinctive. Both the exterior and the interior are completely undyed, making Manul the only model this season to feature an interior lining that isn’t printed. To achieve its minimalist appeal, it forgoes the use of microfiber in sizes for children and adults and features embroidered eyelets to add a special twist. Featuring an upper made from 100% European linen, Manul is available in sizes for toddlers, children and adults.
Tanuki Kokoro (image: Wildling Shoes/Cherie Birkner)
Tanuki Kokoro (Japanese for heart or soul) marks the arrival of yet another minimal shoe made from washi at the Wildling Shoes online shop. With its paper-light, berry-red fabric, this model brings an extra splash of color to your spring days. Tanuki Kokoro can be purchased in sizes for children and adults.
Saker (image: Wildling Shoes/Julia Zoooi)
The Saker model takes its name from the saker falcon, a large bird of prey native to the steppes and forest-steppe regions of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The print of this minimal shoe evokes the rugged landscape of Kyrgyzstan – the vast lakes and the expressive structures of the cliffs and mountains – and transposes this open nature into an urban context. Its 100% recycled cotton upper is very tightly woven to make this model exceptionally water repellent. Saker is available in sizes for children and adults.
Tengri (image: Wildling Shoes/Cherie Birkner)
Tengri not only heralds the debut of a new minimal shoe, it also ushers in an entirely new, minimalist cut to the Wildling Shoes online shop. It features fewer individual pieces and hence fewer seams, making it even more comfortable to wear. The heel loop is crafted in a single piece from the upper fabric, and this model also refrains from using microfiber for the edging and by the heel. The cotton for Tengri comes from Kyrgyzstan and is sourced there as part of a cooperative development project between the Cotonea company and local farmers. This makes it a truly extraordinary material, which, by the way, is featured not only in the Tengri model, but also in the interior of all models lined with cotton. Thanks to its special moleskin processing, this fabric is ultra velvety, breathable, and soft. Tengri comes in sizes for children and adults.
Ogon delivers bold color accents (Image: Nora Tabel/Wildling Shoes)
For shoe fans who love to sport vibrant colors on their feet, Ogon (the Kyrgyz word for fire) definitely fills the bill. With a linen content of 40%, Ogon’s upper in a brilliant tangerine orange provides a comfortable environment for your feet. Its special weave and its fabric blend of organically grown cotton and linen give Ogon a silky look that brings out the model’s bold hues even more. This model also comes without microfiber and is available in sizes for children and adults.
Feather Plum and Feather Forest (images: Wildling Shoes/Janina Steinmetz/Cherie Birkner)
To make sure that we’re also fully equipped for those warmer days, two new Wildling Shoes sandals are waiting in the wings and feature both fresh new color options and a re-engineered design. More refined straps and added material on the sides, for instance, deliver an improved fit and a more secure grip. The sandals are now also made from fewer separate pieces and incorporate a heel loop that doesn’t use any extra material. Both the fuchsia Feather Plum and the green Feather Forest are available in sizes for toddlers, children and adults.
And because the new fit is so convincing, we’ve also adopted it for the black Feather Jackdaw this season. This revised version is now called Feather Magpie and is available in the Wildling Shoes online shop as a summer Basic for adults.
Image: Wildling Shoes/Nora Tabel
What else is new?
This year, all of our spring/summer models for children and adults feature removable insoles. That makes it simple and convenient to air them out and clean them so they’re ready for action again when you are.
Besides that, none of the new models moving into the online shop this time around have a membrane. The only exception is the Yak model for toddlers. That’s why we’re already hard at work on an alternative for the 2022 autumn/winter season. For children's and adult's feet, the spring 2021 Marten is ready and waiting in the Wildling Shoes online shop.
Wildling shoes and their names
It’s actually no coincidence that nearly every single one of the new models has a Kyrgyz name. There is now an entire group of creative minds from different teams that work to find names for Wildling shoes, brainstorming ideas, filtering them out, and rethinking them all over again.
For the spring/summer 2022 models, the Product team drew a wealth of inspiration from nature, falling in love with the landscape of Kyrgyzstan in the course of their research. And because a portion of the material comes from the Cotonea organic cotton project in that very country, it seemed only natural that the names of the new models should also be inspired by it.
Image: Wildling Shoes/Nora Tabel
RE:GENERATION – bit by bit
With a newly designed logo and color scheme, Wildling Shoes aims to make its Purpose, the driving force behind everything we do as a company, more visible to the outside world. This change naturally also extends to the new models, even if it will take a little while for it to be fully reflected in every detail.
As an example, some Feather Forest and Feather Plum pairs still sport the old logo because they were produced before the new one was even finalized – and our production partners want to use their resources wisely. Needless to say, these shoes aren’t going to be thrown out (since that would run completely counter to Wildling Shoes’ values), but instead will be heading off to their new homes when the first orders are placed. All the Feather Magpie models this year will leave the warehouse wearing the old logo, and the colorful Feathers will change logos as the season progresses.
The same goes for the shoe boxes, some of which have been prefabricated and will now naturally be put to further use. And somehow that makes it all a little more exciting, don’t you think?
Image: Wildling Shoes/Nora Tabel
Cover image: Wildling Shoes/Nora Tabel