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Earth Day 2024: Think outside the (shoe)box

At Elegnano, sustainability is always at the back of our mind: from material selection to product development, and sales. In an earlier blog post, we elaborated on the different ways we try to minimize the impact of our products throughout the lifecycle. For this year's Earth Day, we like to focus your attention on something else: our shoeboxes!

A shoebox is a shoebox.

A shoebox is typically a clunky cardboard container adorned with logos and branding. Apart from the occasional kid’s art project, as a storage box, or to make your cat happy, most of us throw the shoebox away as soon as we receive the shoes. At Elegnano, we had our white boxes with the black label on it for years. As the designer and founder, I selected that box at the very beginning and we have been using the same box since.

Until now, we never really questioned the concept of a shoebox. It is what shoes are being stored and transported in, even though, they may not do that job perfectly. It was about time we made some changes.

Say hello to the new Elegnano shoebox.

We have reimagined construction, shape, and material, with a focus on sustainability, functionality, and efficiency.

  1. Unlike traditional quality shoeboxes that arrive at the factory fully formed, our box 2.0 begins its journey in a flat format, drastically reducing its footprint during transportation to our Italian factory by an impressive 85%. This not only minimizes our carbon impact but also optimizes space and resources.

  2. Secondly, we changed the shape. At the factory, the boxes for our heels can be quickly constructed into square boxes. When you stack Elegnano's signature stiletto heels diagonally in a box, they're much more square in shape than rectangular, so it made sense to change the shape of our boxes thereby reducing the size. Our new boxes for heels and boots are around 20% smaller, resulting in a nicer and tighter fit for the shoes and it allows us to optimize transportation, storage, and shipping to customers.

  3. The final attention point is the material of the boxes. We wanted to work with 100% recycled materials. The paper sources for the recycled cardboard are from responsibly managed forests that are FCS certified as well. The label on the box is made out of leather scrap waste from the factory.

Less is more

Since Elegnano shoes are sold almost exclusively online, we didn’t necessarily have to adhere to what is convenient for the storage space and practices in shoe stores. In the new box design this was translated into the shape, but also the branding. We minimized the branding on the boxes to just a small graphic element made from leather scrap waste. We only have smart customers, they know what brand they bought shoes from, so there's no need to plaster the box with logos. This subtle approach not only aligns with our commitment to sustainability but also makes the box versatile for reuse - whether as a gift box, storage solution, or the canvas for a future art project. In this way, our new Elegnano shoeboxes reflect our dedication to style, sustainability, and smart choices.


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