Reebok isn’t letting the cold of winter stop it from latching onto the outdoor footwear craze. The Adidas-owned company is collaborating with apparel brand Story Mfg. to reimagine its Club C and Beatnik sandal footwear silhouettes for the outdoors with an entirely vegan spin.
The alliance with Reebok is the first sneaker launch for Story Mfg. since its inception in 2013. The U.K.-based apparel company operates under the ethos that brands need not sacrifice aesthetics in pursuit of conscious design.
“This project was focused on our love of walking, nature and the outdoors. We came up with the brand on a walk together and whenever we need to think creatively, we go on a walk and hash things out,” Saeed Al-Rubeyi, co-founder of Story Mfg., said in a statement. “Walking is our meditation and as we pound the pavement, we pick our brains for inspiration—we forage for wisdom. These versions of the Club C and Beatnik are slubby-gummy-peacey and friendly, without being foolish—like us.”
The brands say that the Club C and Beatnik paired “perfectly” with Story’s aesthetic due to the former’s “clean, classic” silhouette and the latter’s signature minimal construction. Both uppers are constructed from an undyed, woven linen blend, while the styles have an organic cotton ripstop lining, gummy soles and are finished off with Story’s signature playful graphic in the embroidered, chunky peace sign on the lateral side of each shoe.
The Beatnik is meant to resemble a puffy shoe that mimics the kind of style worn during a camping trip. The padded walking sandal features a pared-down upper strap that minimizes the use of plastic and a removable, recyclable back strap allowing the shoe to transform into a mule.
The Reebok x Story Mfg. collection will be available in unisex sizing starting at $120 beginning Feb. 4 on storymfg.com, with the global release following on Feb. 6.
Story Mfg.’s product manifesto runs deep. The company never uses animal products in its apparel and accessories. The brand’s natural indigo sourcing for denim products mitigates nitrogen levels in over-tilled and farmed soil, and dyeing takes place in a re-planted forest where all waste is used to fertilize the gardens. As part of the brand’s constant quest to make fashion “kinder,” it is also using its platform to combat racism and discrimination.
Screen-printed items are made with water-based inks designed to biodegrade. They are free of solvents and use natural extracts so imperfections and color variations are normal and expected.
The Story Mfg. manifesto aligns with Reebok’s continued push into product sustainability, which falls under two pillars. “ReeGrow” focuses on crafting products from plant-based materials, while ReeCycled aims to use recycled inputs. The company is focused on reducing its use of virgin polyester, and has committed to eliminating it from its material mix by 2024.
In October, Reebok partnered with Massachusetts’ Siena Farms to launch a plant-based running shoe, the Forever Floatride Grow. Certified by the USDA, the shoe features a breathable, eucalyptus fiber upper, a sock liner made from odor-resistant Bloom algae foam, and an outsole made from tree-based rubber.