Aurora Shoe Company
Tell us about your business.We are a small group of dedicated artisans who have been making shoes in our rural, upstate New York town since the early 1990s. Our shoes are like our surroundings - beautiful in their simplicity and organic in their form. We use American made materials and assemble all of our shoes in house and by hand. With a focus on comfort, durability and quality, we are proud to create shoes that reflect our values and lifestyle. We offer re-sole services for the shoes we produce and love giving new life to a well loved pair of shoes. We are launching a new boot style this fall and would like to add simple accessories to our line - belts, wallets, and maybe handbags. We intend to stay small, local and sustainable in our business practices. Our goal is to increase direct sales through our expanding and very loyal customer base.
What makes your business stand out?We are one of the only companies in the US making shoes with American sourced materials. We use Horween leather from Chicago, Vibram soles from Massachusetts, buckles from Massachusetts, and thread from North Carolina. Having been in the business for more than 20 years, we are happy to watch other small business entrepreneurs as they realize that high quality products can be made successfully in the US, and that a good business does not have to leave the country to be profitable.
What's the best business advice you've received?Don't try to be everything to everyone. Make something you're proud of and stand by it. This isn't to say that you shouldn't be responsive or evolve, but there is real value in offering a consistent product. We have found that if you combine timeless styles with high quality materials, you can offer the same products for decades. Fads change, but classics never die!
Mark Your Calendar
NominationsJune 3–Aug. 29, 2014
Nominate yourself or other aspiring makers.Nominate yourself
JudgingJune 23–Sept. 8, 2014
Judges will select finalists throughout this period.Meet the judges
Online VotingSept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014
Vote for your favorite American makers.See the finalists
Winners AnnouncedOct. 17, 2014
2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
American Made EventNov. 7–8, 2014
Join us for our annual event in New York City.Buy tickets now