Jun 26, 2023
by Sofia de la Cruz
Calvin Klein Introduces Knitted Sneaker Made From Pineapple Leaves
by Sofia de la Cruz
Jun 26, 2023

Last November, we introduced ANANAS ANAM’s Piñayarn, a revolutionary 100% plant-based material that emerged as the answer to the petroleum-based textiles and resource-intensive virgin fibers. Made from a low-impact, pineapple leaf blend, Piñayarn became the innovation we eagerly awaited to see become adopted.

With its groundbreaking and low-impact yarn, Piñayarn swiftly captivated the attention of industry heavyweights, infiltrating the realms of fashion, footwear, bags, accessories and even furniture.

When it comes to footwear, the possibilities of Piñayarn are undeniable – matching with ANANAS ANAM’s sister PIÑATEX material, already embraced by heavy hitters like Hugo Boss, Paul Smith and Sezane – with Calvin Klein, the quintessential label of all things basic, making for a hefty first-time footwear partnership.

Calvin Klein has dropped the first-ever knitted shoe made from pineapple leaf fibers, AKA Piñayarn. Dubbed “The Sustainable Knit Trainer,” the silhouette exudes effortless simplicity, arriving in minimal hues like “CK Black” and “Marshmallow.”

Handcrafted in Portugal, the sneaker flaunts a recycled and bio-based knit upper, a plush foam insole crafted from recycled blends, an organic cotton twill lining and a recycled blend TPR outsole. The Calvin Klein logo is plastered on the side, heel, tongue and laces.

In addition, the upper of these trainers consists of 70% TENCEL Lyocell REFIBRA and 30% Piñayarn, combining pineapple fibers, recycled cotton and wood pulp sourced from sustainably managed forests.

But it’s not just the materials that make Piñayarn stand out. The production process is a low-impact wonder. Derived from agricultural waste, Piñayarn is spun through a closed-loop system that’s completely water-free. Make our words, it’s all about that circular economy.

With its “One bold step at a time” philosophy, Piñayarn aims to revolutionize the industry while reducing the hefty resources traditionally required for production.

Calvin Klein seems to be fully committed to sourcing natural materials and slashing their environmental impact. In 2022, their parent company PVH joined joined the Fashion Climate Fund, a $250 million USD initiative, aimed at offsetting the fashion industry’s carbon emissions in half by 2030.

Besides, in the summer of 2021, Calvin Klein unveiled their “Reconsidered Comfort” line, boasting minimalist and eco-friendly underwear designs. The brand teamed up with TENCEL branded fibers known for their responsible production methods and minimal environmental impact.

It all sounds like excellent progress, however, it’s concerning that the label’s website seems to have done a disappearing act when it comes to its sustainability strategy.

While the introduction of a sustainable knit sneaker is undoubtedly a positive step, it should be regarded as just one aspect of Calvin Klein’s broader sustainability approach. The mere inclusion of the term “Sustainable” in the shoe’s name raises questions about the brand’s motivations. Is Calvin Klein genuinely committed to making a difference, or is it merely ticking boxes in its annual report?

It would be truly inspiring to witness the label substitute some of its carry-on shoes made from conventional materials like leather with more circular and eco-friendly alternatives such as Piñayarn. Embracing sustainable materials across their entire product range would demonstrate a stronger dedication to their sustainability and circularity goals.

Nevertheless, it’s exciting to see more and more labels betting on material innovation science, and Calvin Klein’s “Sustainable Knit Trainers” are a price-conscious option with a strong sustainability foundation. Priced at £160 (approximately $215 USD), the sneakers are now available for online shopping.

In other footwear news, Birkenstock’s new “Corduroy” boston is made from… animal leather?