Blaze a trail in shoes designed by you...

"Let us not follow where the path may lead. Let us go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
- Japanese proverb

VIA (vee-uh) is the Italian word for "road."
JIYU (zhoo) is the Japanese word for "freedom."
VIA + JIYU (vee-uh-zhoo) means "The Freedom Road."

It refers to the road less traveled by today's women. A road where women blaze new trails everyday, making their own unique choices. 

This road may or may not involve marriage and children. But, it will certainly lead to adventure, travel and creation. 

With VIAJIYU, design your own shoes or choose flats designed by women we admire, inspired by their extraordinary life stories and the world's most beautiful places.

Our shoes are handmade in Italy, using the finest fabrics, by the same artisans who have been making shoes for centuries. We have partnered with the same Italian shoemakers who make some of the world's best known and sought after luxury shoe brands. We work with the same "accessoristas" who apply Swarovski crystals and jewels to the luxury shoes worn on the red carpet. 


VIAJIYU is a MOVEMENT*

In Tokyo, we started thinking about creating the perfect pair of flats for the modern woman. The woman who travels for work and play. Who conceives businesses as well as children.

She's a doer and a creator and, most of all, a traveler. Sometimes a global nomad after a broken heart or between jobs or just because she can.

She's a new species of woman.

At VIAJIYU, we believe every trailblazing woman needs one fabulous pair of flats.

We want to connect successful, female entrepreneurs around the globe, #TRAILBLAZERS, by profiling women we admire and giving them a platform to connect and share their stories through a product all women #LOVE: #SHOES. We are inviting women we admire to design their own shoes for our site and our exclusive Florence boutique.

 

THE FOUNDER

VIAJIYU was founded by Nicole Still, co-founder of The Balmain Boat Company and founder of Drink Digital. She is a writer and storyteller first and foremost and an accidental entrepreneur second.

Her three small business are ages 10, six and three — her children.  All three small businesses were founded by accident. 

Her story: From Loveland, Ohio to Sydney, Australia VIA TIME Magazine in New York City. From journalist to consultant to shopkeeper, working on four continents.

Her friends say: "Every decade, she loves to burn her life to the ground and start over."

Why shoes? Shoes create stories. Shoes make people happy. You can walk a thousand miles in an amazing pair of shoes. Amazing life stories happen in shoes. 

If you want to meet VIAJIYU's founder, she is almost always working in VIAJIYU's Florence boutique every Saturday and Sunday. Pop by to share stories, especially trailblazing stories, over espresso or prosecco. 

She never dreamed of living in Italy or opening a permanent boutique or starting a shoe company. (She still can't speak Italian.) She thought her business would be virtual. She wanted to create the NikeiD of #flats. She loves sports not shopping.

She wanted to create a movement of #trailblazers...

OUR FOUNDER AT APEC CHINA 2014: Watch

 

WHERE THE JOURNEY BEGAN…

FROM Sydney, Australia TO a Japanese Onsen, VIA TOKYO
"Let the beauty of what you love be what you do."
- Rumi, Persian poet

"I was a New York City gal who was all about heels," says Still. "Then I started traveling for work six months out of the year to Asia. I would go to Mumbai, Shanghai and Beijing every three months for my day job, as well as Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul.

It's impossible to take the road less traveled in a pair of high heels.

I learned the hard way in Tokyo in April 2012, when my friend Lauren and I couldn't find a restaurant on our first night in Tokyo after Google Maps failed us. And I made the mistake of wearing high heels.

Now I don't travel anywhere without flats on my feet and high heels in my bag.

It's tough to walk the uneven sidewalks of cities like Mumbai or catch a flight on time when you're a 30 minutes walk from the departure gate in the biggest airports in the world.

Today's modern woman needs a stylish pair of flats to see the world and take the road less traveled. And, Havaianas — which I love — aren't so great in Korean winter."

So this is the story behind the creation of a luxury, Italian flats brand, where East meets West, old meets new and trailblazing women can design something one of a kind.

In the words of Robert Frost...

"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference."
- Robert Frost, American poet

At VIAJIYU, we believe extraordinary shoes take you extraordinary places.

Where will your VIAJIYU shoes take you?

 

Find out more...

OUR FOUNDER'S STORY: Read

OUR BRAND STORY: English | Italian | Chinese | Japanese | Korean | French 

OUR HOW-TO GUIDE: English | Italian | Spanish | German | Korean | Japanese | Russian Chinese | French

OUR MANIFESTO: Watch 

 

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