The “barefoot” sandal by Souleymane Saël Bah
Uungu, one foot between Kenya and Belgium
Africa, and particularly Kenya and its Maasai people, as a source of inspiration for these “barefoot” sandals (whose sole is designed in such a way that it almost disappears when you wear them) : this is the proposal of the house Uungu. These sandals are imagined and designed in France, developed and prototyped in Belgium, then handmade in Kenya : a cultural collaboration, a real sharing of know-how !
Uungu, which means divinity in Swahili, strikes a balance between the creation of contemporary design, cultural reference, preservation of know-how, eco-responsibility and fair trade. Indeed, if the ethnic inspiration is obvious (reference to the Maasai people), the modernity of the Uungu models can be appreciated in the details, with a sole design that follows the shape of the foot as closely as possible : once worn, the sole fades away and the sandal is nothing but a jewel of pearls. The Kenyan technique of stringing glass beads, a tradition passed down from generation to generation, is carried out by a collective of local craftsmen, with whom the Uungu house wishes to work, ensuring them fair remuneration. Finally, Uungu uses vegetable tanned leathers. A method of production and manufacturing that aims to be the most virtuous and respectful of values and people.
With an African deity as its emblem (the Uungu logo is a stylized representation of a Nimba Demba mask from the Baga people of Guinea Conakry), the entire collection of sandals honors the goddesses of African culture, whose colorful symbols are highlighted by the work of beads. Barefoot is worn without distinction by Her. By him.
Souleymane Saël Bah, the founder and creator of Uungu, is a child of the world, of Guinean origin (Conakry), who has lived in various countries of sub-Saharan Africa, in the Maghreb and in several European countries. After studying business, he was responsible for customer relations in French luxury brands. Rich in his culture, his travels, during which he discovered a village of Samburu women in Kenya, which will inspire the work he presents to us today, Souleymane Saël Bah launched Uungu in 2020. A brand that is a tribute to all the women who inspired him, “a tribute to all the ladies of our big cities, who are true urban warriors for him”. – Souleymane Sael Bah
The unisex Uungu “barefoot” sandal : real foot jewel for Her and Him.