Company History

For Bare Feet, Inc. has been a family run business for over 20 years and would like to proudly acknowledge our beginnings, reflect on our past and share our story with you.

The owner of For Bare Feet, Inc., Sharon Rivenbark, a former fifth grade school teacher, started a sock company with $1,200 she borrowed from her parents – enough to buy one antique Banner knitting machine and some shop space in Nashville, Indiana.

The business was to be for her son, Tim, who had to drop out of Indiana University at age 18 because of a brain tumor. Doctors had told Sharon that Tim would, in time, become mentally handicapped. So, Sharon started the sock business so her son would have a place in the world, a business of his own.

The unique designs and patterns that Sharon knit into the socks were an instant success. Their appeal prompted numerous shop owners from other cities who were traveling through Nashville on vacation, to request that Sharon sell the socks to them on a wholesale basis for resale in their shops.

“I started selling socks in a market that had not perceived socks as gifts before. I guess you could say I created a market that wasn’t there,” Sharon explained.

After Tim passed away in January of 1987, there was no question in Sharon’s mind that For Bare Feet, Inc. was going to be successful. “It was all I had left of my son,” she said.

As the wholesale and retail business grew, the retail stores became their own company, SMTK, dba For Bare Feet Shops. There are now shops in Indiana, Tennessee, Arkansas, Illinois, Michigan, Colorado and California. The shops sell a large selection of socks, accessories and gifts. The internet site, ForBareFeetShops.com provides customers the opportunity to purchase some of the items available in the shops online.

For Bare Feet, Inc., the manufacturing company, became FBF Originals, which now produces literally thousands of designs of socks for an incredible array of clients.