|Headquarters||New York, NY|
|Press Contact||Tom Tofield|
Tofers is on a mission to make the most comfortable, refined men's shoes on the planet while looking out for the planet. Based in NYC, designed in London, and ethically made in Portugal with eco-friendly components. Planting one mangrove tree + restoring one square foot of kelp forests with every pair. Elevate your footprint today.
It started with a question, "Will you marry me?" as (Tom, the Founder) popped the question to his now wife, Charlotte. Fast forward a year or so as he started to pull together my outfit for the big day - a well fitted midnight blue tux and some sharp smoking slippers (sans socks).
The tux part was a breeze, relatively speaking. The shoes however were a real challenge. Smoking slippers aren't necessarily hard to find, but they aren't in every shop either, and he learned that a quality pair cost multiples more than he imagined. After too many days of hunting online and across the shops of NYC, he found his top contender and placed his order. They were beautiful shoes, and on his wedding day he felt like James Bond.
Coming off the wedding and honeymoon high in 2019, Tom reflected back on that shoe hunt and reasoned there had to be a better option out there, only there wasn't… yet. While the shoes he bought were worth every penny, that was only because it was for his wedding. To this day he can't fathom wearing them out onto the streets of NYC for fear of scuffing them. Beyond the insane price tag, they were uncomfortable, had zero traction, didn't breathe well, and were packaged in an incredibly inefficient manner.
Tom could have left it there and moved on with his life, but he was obsessed with how amazing smoking slippers looked and wanted to find a way to wear them out comfortably in the world on less formal occasions - from the office to happy hours and weekend errands around town. So he decided he would make the perfect shoe - clean looks at a reasonable price while ensuring insane comfort and breathability with a focus on sustainability – Tom knew he wasn’t the only person who wanted to look sharp and not feel guilty about the impact my choices were having on the planet.
Starting from scratch, he viewed it as his responsibility to create the cleanest product possible, using eco-conscious materials with a focus on an efficient supply chain while supporting the planet along the way.
Easier said than done. Tom had zero background in fashion coming from the world of mergers & acquisitions, something which proved to be an advantage. What he did have was a vision, a proclivity for managing complexity, and a desire, willingness, and good fortune in pulling together an all-star team of footwear industry veterans with a collective ~60 years of industry experience to help me make it a reality.
Following extensive market research, they started designing & developing Tofers' first product, the best & most sustainable smoking slipper, in mid 2020. By year’s end, they had a design ready to go and a team of skilled artisans through our factory partner in Portugal to make it happen.
Over the first half of 2021, Tom worked with Miguel, his agent in Portugal, to fine tune their first product called the Hampton smoking slipper. They iterated through 6 or 7 versions before finally landing on the finished product. It is the perfect balance of looks and comfort, while incorporating eco-conscious components without sacrificing on feel or durability.
In the summer of 2021 Tom had proper product photography done, and shot a video for the upcoming Kickstarter launch.In October, the Kickstarter was live. The funds raised would finance the first production run, with an added benefit of knowing what size and colors customers wanted in advance (instead of blindly ordering and hoping it worked out!). By month's end, Tofers nearly doubled its fundraising goal, keeping the dream alive and confirming that people appreciate what we're putting out.
By December, the production order was in with the factory, which arrived in Spring of 2022 to fill our Kickstarter orders and allow us to launch direct to consumer sales on our website. Initial inventory is limited, so we expect them to go quick!