In the early 20th century, the German economy flourishes during the “economic miracle” and the euphoric atmosphere inspires young shoemaker Konrad Birkenstock. After the success of his shoe last, he now focuses on ailing or deformed feet. Up to that point, deformed feet were treated with insoles made from rigid and unyielding metal. Over the years, Konrad experiments with various materials until he is successful with a mixture of cork and rubber: the BIRKENSTOCK footbed is born.
But that was the easy part. Now, Konrad has to convince the shoe experts and industry of his invention. As a first step, he travels from shoe store to shoe store – a task that is soon taken over by his 15-year-old son Carl when Konrad is prevented due to the war. In the young Weimar Republic, father and son present the invention to doctors, orthopedists and shoemakers with missionary zeal. They need a lot of staying power: in professional circles the headstrong man, who shook up the conventions of an entire profession and thus also called into question its economic raison d'être, was met with a fair amount of skepticism.
Meanwhile, Konrad devotes all his energy to his mission: nothing less than the revolution of foot orthopedics. The Blue Footbed becomes Konrad Birkenstock’s second major contribution to modern and healthy footwear as we know it today.