As new information arises daily regarding the conditions of the earth, many are turning to methods of sustainability to save it. Over the years, we’ve seen a drastic change that has pushed toward more sustainable concepts in fashion brands, food materials, cars, tech products, and more. For almost a decade, adidas has been focused on sustainability and last year they made an even bolder commitment, to help end plastic waste.
Since adidas Originals has always been an integral part of hip hop fashion and music, with some of its classic styles that have made permanent marks in the history books, it’s only right they teamed up with REVOLT and hip hop comedian Druski to take a closer look at the use of plastic. As you may know, on each episode of “Sneakin’ in With Druski” the host Dru will rock a pair of Stan Smith Shoes made of recycled material, and share tips and tricks on how to turn to a more sustainable lifestyle and save the planet.
Since 2012, the brand has been a founding member of adidas and Parley for the Oceans, a global network of forward thinkers who work together to bring awareness to the fragility and beauty of the oceans as a means to end the destruction we as humans have caused it. The sneaker brand also backs programs such as its Ocean Plastic Program to end marine plastic pollution. This program includes three pillars titled adidas vs. adidas Originals and Parley’s A.I.R. Strategy which stands for avoid virgin plastic, intercept plastic waste, and redesign new alternatives.
Focusing on the redesign, adidas Originals is one step closer to minimizing plastic waste and our carbon footprint. This is where the innovation that has now brought forth vegan and recycled content to the forefront of shoemaking comes in.
Insert Stan Smith sneakers, Druski’s choice for his “Sneakin in with Druski” episodes. What’s so special about the Stan Smith sneaker? Their specific design is the key reason acts like Run-DMC had the opportunity to reinvent the nature of Adidas, making it a shoe embedded in hip hop culture.
For over 50 years, Stan Smith sneakers has been a staple in the adidas Originals footwear lineup. Named after the tennis player of the same name, the brand used the athlete’s namesake to get in the U.S. market. Although Stan Smith sneakers were powered by a tennis star, the culture transformed its use, making it a casual shoe with ample style. Since then, it’s been a hit amongst the sneaker and streetwear community. The simplicity of the styles makes for easy styling and the history makes early versions of the Stan Smith sneaker a sneakerhead’s dream.
When speaking design, the silhouette has always been simple. Many early changes included switching back and forth between Smith and fellow tennis player Robert Haillet, and the addition of the green foam padding to the back of the shoe. Since the ‘90s, a velcro option and several new colorways have popped up, but the white sneaker with the green accent still remains a top choice amongst sneakerheads. adidas has also come up with more than 20 limited edition Stan Smith sneakers that have made their way to collectors’ closets. Though the shoe has remained almost untouched in form, the rarity of finding an old pair still brings excitement to adidas fans as they seek out the early style that was made in France.
Noticing the number of custom art pieces and spray paint designs that were drawn by the community onto the sleek Stan Smith sneakers, adidas Originals launched Adicolor, an initiative that gave buyers the tools needed to customize their sneakers. In 2005, they relaunched the move with adidas Originals creating its own Adicolor versions of the Stan Smith sneakers.
Adding another layer to the success and longevity of the brand by opting for sustainability years ago, adidas Originals is trying their hand at the Stan Smith sneaker after several successful runs with other models. Their work is purposed to create sustainable wear, which they have successfully done over the past three years. The Stan Smith sneaker silhouette while boasting a minimalist style, utilizes a complex mix of recycled materials.
With a fresh redesign, 50 percent of the upper is made with recycled materials, and the outsole is made of rubber waste. With a simple and almost unnoticeable redesign, the Stan Smith sneaker is a part of adidas Originals’ commitment to using only recycled polyester by the year 2024.
Along with the sneakers, the brand’s aim for sustainability introduces two new fabrics, PRIMEGREEN and PRIMEBLUE. In 2030, adidas Originals aims to have reduced its carbon footprint by 30 percent and reach climate neutrality by 2050.
Doing what they can now to make the difference in the long run, adidas Originals is starting the journey to sustainability by choosing one of its largest sneakers in its catalog powerful enough to influence the world through restorative redesign and recycled goods. The Stan Smith sneaker was built to last and now it’s built to help save the planet.