When mom-to-be Patricia Calfee began to find it difficult to function in her favorite footwear, she and husband Ian Picache decided to solve the problem by creating a collection of fashion-driven comfort looks.
The duo is no stranger to the fashion world, having created Bergine, a flash-sale website that they sold to Gilt Group in 2010, and together they developed a new footwear brand called Roses and Rye.
“I love my shoe collection, but it was getting harder to walk in high heels,” said Patricia Calfee. “I began digging around for what I was going to [wear] in the future. I [wanted to build] a shoe to protect my feet while running around with my baby.”
Calfee and Picache tapped podiatrists and footwear experts to develop the concise collection, which features their patent-pending LIFT technology. LIFT has an angled mid-sole designed to alleviate stress on the arches, a spacious toe box, a shock-absorbing insole and a slip-resistant outsole. Uppers are made of supple kidskin.
The initial offering focuses on two silhouettes — a low-heel semi d’Orsay at $189 and a ballet flat at $235 — produced in a small, family-owned factory in Brazil.
Roses and Rye launched online at Rosesandrye.com last month. Calfee will also generate sales through trunk shows, where show hosts will receive credit toward the purchase of shoes and select a school to receive a percentage of the event’s sales.