Gucci’s newest kicks have no need for leather.
The luxury label is now making an animal-free material called Demetera that will be featured on new editions of brand’s Basket, New Ace and Rhyton shoes. The product of two years of research and development, the material is made up of more than 77 percent plant-based raw materials, making it one of the brand’s most promising sustainable solutions yet.
Named after the Greek goddess of agriculture and new harvest, Demetera is made of a compound of viscose and wood pulp as well as bio-based polyurethane, according to WWD. The material is produced at one of the brand’s factories in Italy and uses the same tanning processes as leather to ensure its soft and durable. While the material is currently only being used by Gucci, the house will make it available to other Kering brands starting next year.
The trio of newly released sneakers will be the first products made primarily of Demetera. Although they will reportedly include materials like organic cotton, as well recycled steel and polyester, the majority of the shoe and their lines will be made from the new material. The brand says more Demetera shoes and other items will appear in the near future.
“In our 100th anniversary year, Demetra is a new category of material that encapsulates Gucci’s quality and aesthetic standards with our desire to innovate, leveraging our traditional skills and know-how to create for an evolving future,” president and CEO Marco Bizzarri said in a statement. “Demetra offers our industry an easily scalable, alternative choice and a more sustainable material that also answers the needs of animal-free solutions.”
If you’re looking to get your hands on a pair of leather-free Gucci kicks, the two low-top models, the New Ace and Rhyton, are available now through the brand’s website. Meanwhile, the high-top Basket is schedule to go on sale on Friday.