TOMS is hosting a party to thank Venice for its creative inspiration

TOMS’ new line of shoes pays tribute to Venice

From the Beats to The Doors to skate culture and beyond, Venice has long been a source of inspiration for artists. Now it’s also the inspiration for a new line of shoes by the socially responsible homegrown brand TOMS — and to celebrate, TOMS is throwing a party for Venice.

The free community bash for the Venice Collection happens Saturday afternoon at The Unlikely Florist, and like any good Venice party there’ll be music and art.

Psychedelic electro-rock band Gypsum weaves dreamy sonic tapestries; Spencer Falls and The Unlikely Florist have teamed up to assemble an interactive art piece; and community leaders from nonprofits like Homeboy Industries, Art with Purpose and Get Lit give short talks to inspire. A display of local artworks, a collage of activist posters curated by creative agency TaskForce, and music by singer-songwriter Madison Douglas as well as Mars + MOUF round out the afternoon.

Everytable (from the minds of food desert combater Groceryships and a winner of TOMS Social Entrepreneurship Fund) serves up bites, and eco-friendly wine company The Dreaming Tree provides the pours.

Before you jump to conclusions about capitalism co-opting Earth Day or cashing in on Abbot Kinney cool, remember that since TOMS started out of founder Blake Mycoskie’s Venice Beach apartment, it’s stayed close to its roots (Playa Vista adjacent) without trying to shoehorn corporate offices into Venice, and tried to make the world a better place — donating a pair of shoes to someone in need for every pair purchased.

And for that, why not raise a glass?

— Christina Campodonico

“Art, Music, Purpose” happens from 2 to 7 p.m. Saturday (April 21) at The Unlikely Florist, 715 Hampton Dr., Venice. Free.