Pinay's vegan footwear brand making headlines in LA
An LA-based shoe company owned by a Filipino-American aims to deliver "vegan" footwear to modern women looking for stylish and sustainable fashion statements beginning this summer.
Bianca Moran Mabanta's SUSI Studio has already been featured in Forbes and Huffington Post for advocating "a fulfilling and stylish life without partaking in inhumane practices."
"A woman should never have to compromise her values for fashion," Moran told Huffington Post. "Susi is all about cute and conscious consumerism."
The female-owned and -operated studio also has a commitment to "encourage women of all walks of life to take the first step to pursue their passion" through its "Start Today" campaign.
"We’re all deeply aware of how in this modern day and age, women still need to work ten times harder than men do to prove their worth. It’s because of this that we support each other and push each other’s boundaries to be our best," Moran told Forbes.
SUSI's Summer 2016 line of chunky heels, mary janes, and wedges, also caught the attention of fashion sites such as Los Angeles Racked for its sweet, sensible, Sixties-inspired footwear.
Moran explained in an interview with The Mutant Season in February that the goal of SUSI was to "create vegan options or more sustainable options" for shoes, food, and other retail options.
SUSI was also a way to connect with Moran's Filipino roots and work in a bit of wordplay into her company.
"I was visiting Philippines where my parents were originally from and I didn't really grow up there but I wanted Susi's identity to kinda be tied in with my own roots," she explained.
"And I found out that susi- the word meant "key"- and it kinda sounded like sustainability and I was like, well, I'm trying to build a brand that's sustainable... so the slogan could be the key to sustainable living," Moran added.
Moran is also a filmmaker and restaurateur, having established SUSI Restaurant, a vegan-vegetarian European restaurant, in Bonifacio Global City in the Philippines last year. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News