Marcus Jörgensen has run his own fashion agency for 14 years and has spent the last few years working on his own venture, mid-price premium sneaker brand Sandays.
— I have been skating my entire life and Sandays started out as a skateboard-inspired brand, says Jörgensen. However, I realised quite quickly that my customer is a kind of middle-aged man with a good sense of style — and not a skater boy. So, we made a turn, and now we’re doing more ’clean’ sneakers, using what’s probably one of the best production you can find in the world. My factory in Italy is making sneakers for the best brands, like Louboutin.
The label has now teamed up with Swedish chef Johan Jureskog, the man behind leading Scandinavian meet restaurant AG in central Stockholm, on a very special collab.
How did it come to life?
— A friend of mine met Johan at an airport. He texted me a picture of Johan’s shoes, asking: ’Isn’t this Sandays?’ And it was. My friend replied that Johan is sitting with me talking about his sneakers, how good they are, that he owns several pairs, and so forth. I asked my friend to say hi from me and texted Johan on Instagram that I’ve heard that he’s a fan of my shoes and that I had this idea. ’I’m a fan of yours as I like cooking and I really like your place — it would be fun to do something together’. He replied the same day, so we had a coffee and I told him about my idea; to take the meat that he uses in his restaurant, and the skin, and make a shoe out of it. He liked the idea, adding: ’Let’s make a chef’s table dinner, with shoes on the menu’. This was in November, so less than six months ago, and here we are today.
And how was the process after your meeting?
— We reached out to Järinge gård, a farm right north of Stockholm, which is delivering the best quality meat to AG, saying that we needed their leather skins and the meat — basically, the whole piece — in order to make this dinner. They replied, saying that they were all up for being a part of it. So, then we just had to find a tannery… And, if you want a cow skin on the floor at your home, it’s easy to find one. But for tanning leather that you can make shoes out of — you’re left with one to go to in Sweden; Tärnsjö. I came across their Head of Sales, sent her an email with the request. She replied immediately, saying, again: ”Wow, this is so fun!” They did the leathers almost free of charge. When they were done, they shipped it down to Italy, in January, says Jörgensen.
The shoes are made in a natural colour which is supposed to grow more beautifulover time. The same animals are served during the chef’s table dinners at AG in Stockholm.
— Before we start these Chef’s table dinners, we ask the guests to put on their shoes and use them throughout the dinner. We want the character, we want them to spill on it — some red wine will just make the shoes look better. People can come back to me and get new shoelaces, and then the shoe will look even nicer.
What have you learned throughout the process?
— Nothing is impossible — you can do a shoe collaboration with a leading restaurant and, thanks to the local production and supply, it can turn out really nice. I would definitely do it again, taking care of the leather instead of throwing it away. It would have been so cool to go do, say Denmark or Paris, and do it again! Jörgensen concludes.