Payless Shoes Brings Sustainability to Kids Shoes

A sample of Payless's new Zoe and Zack line

A sample of Payless's new Zoe and Zack line

With costs of consumer goods rising everywhere, Payless Shoes has announced a new “green” line as part of their Spring 2009 line.

The new Zoe and Zack line of shoes, jewelry and handbags, is Payless ShoeSource’s first foray into sustainability. They’ve brought in fashion and beauty adviser (and author) Summer Rayne Oakes as their eco-consultant.

Payless views the Zoe and Zack line as their way to make green foot fashion affordable. Their average price will be under $30, a welcome relief to Moms needing to keep their growing kids in shoes.

There are currently no industry standards as to what’s “green”, admits Oakes. This is a “learning process for the consumer and company,”  she said.

Payless is setting their standards in the materials used for this new line of products. These include using organic cotton, at least 20% recycled rubber, eco foam, and nickel-freemetal and hemp. The plan also calls for “eco-smart packaging” though no word yet on what that means.

The Zoe and Zack line will be available with select styles in 1,000 stores and available on

Affordable “green” footwear isn’t a new idea. Teva, Timberland, Toms, Nike, and Patagonia all have sustainble shoe lines. It will be interesting to see how Payless distinguishes their new line from the pack. But kudos to them for the effort!