Sylven New York was founded by Casey Dworkin in 2017, who is also the Creative Director of Sylven New York and born on Earth Day, very special synchrony to Pazlifestyle! Casey is an advocate for the sustainability movement armed with a degree in Product Design from Drexel University. Casey’s passions are footwear and sustainability, she moved to New York City in January of 2013 to pursue a career in the footwear industry full-time. A truly remarkable and inspiring woman.
Sylven New York uses vegan (apple) leather, a bio-based leather alternative made using organic apple waste originating in Tyrol, a town nestled at the base of the Italian Alps. Tyrol is the largest supplier of organic apples in Europe and every year is faced with a significant amount of waste. The cores and skins of the apple waste are taken and transformed into a pulp, which is then bound to a fabric for structure. The result is a ‘leather’ imitative material that structurally holds many of the same properties as a traditional animal leather while remaining completely animal-free. Sylven New York vegan leather is made without any virgin plastics and using a water-based process. This water-based process still uses 95% less water than the standard chemical process. Overall energy consumption is also reduced in this process by roughly 55%.
Sylven New York works with family-owned operated facilities. The factories are monitored continuously and go through rigorous certification programs to ensure ethical labor practices and sustainable manufacturing practices. The internal team makes personal visits to each of the facilities at least twice a year. 100% of the artisans are making fair wages. Sylven New York footwear is ethically handcrafted in Italy and the metal hardware is ethically handcrafted by fair trade artisans in Kenya. The metal hardware is made with the same time and attention to detail as jewelry. The metals used are native to Kenya, and each piece is forged entirely by hand. In addition to the direct support of the artisan communities, Sylven New York donates a portion of proceeds from all styles incorporating our custom hardware to The Better Scholarship, our new initiative to help support education and community development within low-income regions of Kenya.
Sustainability is a priority for Sylven New York. Every decision is carefully guided by sustainability at Sylven New York from design, shipping, photography, retail partners, and travel. To limit the environmental impact they partnered with a company called TerraCycle to ensure proper recycling and disposal of all unusable parts of our products, to limit disposal through their Vault product portal. Every pair of Sylven New York shoes is shipped with recycled paper, recycled cotton dust bags, and recycled and recyclable shoe boxes. They employ a plastic-free packaging mandate with all of the factory partners. Sylven New York offers care, cleaning, and repairs to extend the life of every pair of shoes they create and are committed to bringing you the best sustainable luxury footwear possible.