The people behind the sunglasses
Shadeshares originates from the long-time vision of Finnish technology entrepreneur Jan-Erik Westergård and Kenyan entrepreneur Veronica Westergård. After finding a group of like-minded people who shared his vision the idea concretised to Kenya. Shadeshares is now doing its part for the benefit of the world by developing the skills of young adults in Kenya by training and employing them as well as planting trees at the equator.
It was clear from the beginning that Shadeshares would not use subcontractors in the manufacturing of its sunglasses. We have our own workshop in Nairobi which employs a production team of ten people. The sunglasses are designed in Finland with the Finnish team working closely with the Kenyan side of the business.
We welcome you to visit our production unit and showroom in Nairobi, Kenya.
For every pair of sunglasses you buy we plant a tree in our own nursery in Oyugis Kenya creating carbon sinks. In addition to carbon-neutral, sustainable and stylish products responsibility and sustainable development mean a fair wage paid to employees as well as employment benefits.
The local church in Oyugis has given us a piece of land to plant trees for the next 100 years. So far we have planted over 60 000 trees. We have room for 5 million trees all together. You are welcome to come and plant your own trees with the help of our tree planting crew. The seedlings are on us.
Shadeshares is the strong blend of two cultures. Birch veneer has a long tradition in Finnish design as a raw material for design products. In Shadeshares sunglasses this wonderful material and Scandinavian design language are uniquely combined with Kenyan handwork. Our collections feature both classic shapes and fashionable statement silhouettes.
We are extremely proud of the community we have built, and we have seen firsthand how people’s lives change given the opportunity to work and make a living from it. We believe in training and employment as well as people who dare to think differently. This means buying transparency and taking concrete actions towards responsibility to counteract disposable culture.