In 2012, Michael Paratore was traveling through India when he bought a pair of shoes from a street vendor in Mumbai. Once he was back in the Bay Area, he started wearing the shoes every day, and to all types of events. With all of the compliments he received on them, Michael realized the demand for a versatile, comfortable, and unique pair of shoes. He quit his job as a corporate lawyer, booked a trip back to India to find the craftswomen and craftsmen who made the shoes, and started Mohinders Shoes.
Mohinders Shoes sells handwoven footwear made by artisans in Athani Village, India. Small batches of shoes are passed between home workshops since artisans specialize in different steps of the process, like cutting the leather, measuring stitches, and hand-weaving.
As an environmentally conscious company, Mohinders Shoes has taken the time to find reliable sources of leather. The artisans who make the shoes purchase water buffalo hides from family-run operations at a local leather market. The leather-tanning facilities use simple methods in their backyards and every step is done by hand.
The final product is a slip-on with a padded insole and intricate weaving. The shoes are sold between $145 and $185 and can be purchased online or at several boutique stores located throughout the US. Michael’s company grew fast over the past two years, but when he needed a loan to expand his inventory to meet demand, he couldn’t find funding from a traditional bank. So he came to PCV, and we’re excited to be working with them!