Label watch - Mors

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While there are a few trainer companies in England - Esquire favourite Pointer being one of them - we're still under represented in the world of trainers. So when we found out about Mors, a high-end line, we had to discover more. We spoke with Jonathan Mors, who told us how he got started, some of the outside the box materials used and what separates his trainers from the pack.

How did you get started with Mors?
Well, I was made redundant while working for a large sportswear brand. I¹d always wanted to start something on my own and it seemed like the perfect opportunity, I had nothing to lose! I wanted to produce something of a higher quality to suit my own tastes a bit more. I felt the market was dominated by large corporations and there was an opportunity for independent brands.

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What was your background prior to Mors?
I was a footwear designer for large sportswear and denim brands (Adidas, Nike etc). I learned my craft there and had the opportunity to create performance sports products as well as more fashion focused footwear. The products I designed were often compromised to save money, so when I started Mors I wanted to lead by design and quality above all.

Have you always been into trainers?
Trainers are something I¹ve always been into, but my interest in the design of really developed whilst at University. I was studying car design and working in a skateboard shop while I was there, it made me really interested in the design side of footwear when I sold the shoes in the store. I went to work as a designer for adidas straight from University. I do have a small sneaker collection but all my energy goes into my own products now.

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How long has Mors been going?
I started Mors 2 years ago, I¹m currently selling the 4th season. I've had some great retailers like Beams in Japan that bought from the first season and stuck by me. That¹s really helped to get me through and things are really taking off now.

Where are the trainers made?
All of the shoes are hand made in the European Union. I started with a factory in Portugal and now I also have a superb factory in Eastern Europe that creates handmade vulcanised trainers. They are high quality small scale factories that only work with top end materials and use their skills to improve on my designs, crafting a tactile detailed shoe that also looks great on the foot.

What are some of the materials used?
I've played around with some impressive leathers so far including Arctic elk leather (much softer and stronger than bovine leather), and fish leather which has amazingly rich textures. This season I've created a more vintage feel with an Italian washed vintage leather and a reverse leather (underside of the hide). Butter soft Italian leathers make up a big part of my range with Italian canvas & suede as well.

What makes your trainers different from, for example, a pair of Nikes?
Well, I create a handcrafted refined shoe, there¹s no compromise on the rich quality of materials or talented factories that I use. Mors designs have a more mature style, an effortless casual look for people that appreciate detail and quality. And as I¹m a small independent there won¹t be a million other people wearing the same shoes as you.