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On Our Radar: Zoraide Shoes

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Buy a shoe, plant a tree? They aren’t two activities that typically go hand in hand, but Paola Bay, the designer behind Italian footwear label Zoraide, has managed to blend them rather seamlessly.

“I am delighted to be able to plant a new tree for every shoe sold,” she tells Style.com. And the environmental-friendliness of her line, launched in 2008, does not stop there: “It is currently impossible to make eco shoes, due to a lack of eco materials—I call them ethic shoes. I started by doing some evening vegan styles by using eco-reptiles, [like] stamped and embossed calfskin, as crocodiles, lizards, anacondas, etc. are all going down in numbers.” All of those materials went into her latest Carnivorous Plants Fall ’12 collection (around $680), which caught our eyes during Milan fashion week, and the results are truly luxe (the likes of Madonna and Nicole Kidman, two of her celebrity clients, seem to think so, too). The collection is made up of vibrantly colored heels (pictured), each inspired by their namesake plant.

Zoraide, stocked at retailers like Thecorner.com and Gente in Rome, has also teamed up with Global Goods Partners, a nonprofit organization that facilitates the sale of fair-trade products made by local artisans worldwide, on a Red Carpet Goes Green capsule collection, targeted at celebrities interested in furthering the eco-conscious dialogue with their footwear choices. The shoes, like the Greta or the Marilyn, are named after “the most celebrated movie stars of the past who, if still with us, would be the most passionate about preserving our planet.” We are fairly certainly these iconic screen sirens might be as passionate about Zoraide shoes, too.

Photo: Courtesy of Zoraide

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