Deco Drive recently visited to showcase the LOOP’s partnership with Ocean Sole and share with viewers how this global company is changing the way we see our favorite footwear.


Flip-flops are a South Florida closet staple, but around the world, they pollute our oceans. One global company is changing the way we see our favorite footwear.

Ocean Sole works to give flip-flops a second life, turning them into art, and you’ll be able to snag a pair — or, should we say, buy a piece — this Earth Day.

Sole to the highest bidder. Ocean Sole recycles flip flops and turns em’ into art.

You can buy the creative pieces at the SOS Ocean Conservation Day event.

Arianne Glassman, Fort Lauderdale Beach Open Spaces Coordinator, City of Fort Lauderdale: “Ocean Sole has really been a part of Las Olas Oceanside Park since we took this over two years ago. We’re thrilled to have them as a partner.”

Erin Smith, Chief Sole Mate, Ocean Sole: “Ocean Sole is a social enterprise based out of Kenya that, basically, every single day cleans up beaches on the Indian Ocean. Then we take the flip-flops that we find, that we then turn into art.”

To some, flip-flops are a luxury. To others, they’re a main footwear.

Erin Smith: “There are over three and a half billion people that wear flip-flops, and those flip-flops end up in our oceans.”

Rather than polluting beaches, these soles are getting a second life.

Erin Smith: “We take all those flip-flops, wash them, sanitize them and put them together through glue, and that’s when the artists start to carve them.”

Part of the proceeds go to taking care of the Earth.

Erin Smith: “A majority of our proceeds are going to go to helping clean the beaches through the LOOP Organization.”

The artists are from Kenya, where the company’s based, but Ocean Sole would love to see the art have some local flair.

Erin Smith: “What I’d like to do is start collecting flip-flops from this area as opposed to just Kenya, and then bringing in an artisan or artisans to come over and make something specific.”

You can pick up your favorite animal in sculpture form, or grab a ball and juggle.

Erin Smith: “Our most popular items are dolphins, manatees, turtles, but we also have a whole safari collection that we use from Kenya.”

Ocean Sole’s sandals were on the Paris runway for Fashion Week, just not in this size.

Erin Smith: “The luxury brand Chloé called us about seven, eight months ago and wanted to collaborate with us to make their Lou flip-flop.”

Upcycling at its finest.

The event happens Sunday, April 24, at Las Olas Oceanside Park.

Fifth annual SOS Ocean Conservation Day