Fashion, Design & Beauty

Calvin Klein to Launch Pineapple Leaf Shoes

In a bid to address the ecological impact of fashion, Calvin Klein has partnered with Ananas Anam and TENCEL™ to launch “The Sustainable Knit Trainer.” This product marks Calvin Klein’s debut into sustainable footwear, with the shoe’s knitted upper composed of a blend of PIÑAYARN® and TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers.

As the fashion industry comes to terms with the environmental repercussions of synthetic fabrics, brands are turning to plant-based alternatives like PIÑAYARN®. Derived from discarded pineapple leaves, this material employs an environmentally friendly spinning process that conserves water.

“Broadening our product offering means we can valorize more waste, increasing our positive impact on the environment and society.”

Blending this material with TENCEL™ Lyocell, sourced from responsibly managed forests, further elevates the sustainability of the trainer. TENCEL™ Lyocell is produced using a solvent spinning method that recycles over 99% of the solvent and water, ensuring complete traceability in the final blended yarn.

Ananas anam pineapple leaf fabric
© Ananas Anam

Melissa Braithwaite, PIÑAYARN® Product Development Manager at Ananas Anam, highlighted the motivation behind PIÑAYARN®, explaining, “We have an abundance of available raw material within our business, and broadening our product offering means we can valorize more waste, increasing our positive impact on the environment and society.”

Ananas Anam is no stranger to the sustainable fashion space and has also partnered with other brands, including Saucony and ZARA. The company has even created vegan automotive interiors with its Piñatex pineapple leather. The company’s new fabric, PIÑAYARN®, provides a versatile, sustainable material option that can be adapted to various applications. 

TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers have proven instrumental in creating “The Sustainable Knit Trainer”, as they seamlessly blend with diverse textiles like the pineapple leaf fiber chosen for this product. Apart from the trainer’s upper, TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers can also be utilized in other shoe components such as lining, insoles, padding, laces, zippers, and sewing threads.

Tencel Refibra
© Tencel

Nicole Schram, Global Business Development Manager at Lenzing (the producers of TENCEL™), expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “This partnership is the perfect example of our commitment to provide education and expertise to support anyone who chooses to improve the environmental and social credentials of their products by using more responsible materials.”

The Sustainable Knit Trainer’s upper is crafted from 70% TENCEL Lyocell REFIBRA™ and 30% Piñatex™, incorporating recycled cotton and wood pulp from sustainable forests. With a foam insole, organic cotton twill lining, and recycled blend outsole, this footwear represents a leap towards sustainable and planet-conscious fashion choices from Calvin Klein. 

Melanie Broyé-Engelkes, CEO of Ananas Anam, told vegconomist, “Each brand collaboration is presenting its own set of new and exciting challenges, and we are proud of all of them.” 

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