Nike Introduces The Sustainably Designed Space Hippie

by Bill McCool on 02/06/2020 | 2 Minute Read

Last year, Nike released its free Circular Design Guide, championing a future that embraces sustainable practices where you create a product that is not only durable and long-lasting but has an end purpose as well.

So, after releasing the guide, the iconic brand cracked their knuckles, had a good stretch, and called it a day.

Just joshin’. Now, we’re starting to see the fruits of their circular labor, and, just yesterday, they announced Space Hippie, a sneaker created using leftover scraps from their factory floors. Each of the four sneakers in the collection utilizes material choices, methods, and packaging that discern what their environmental footprint would be. 

Editorial photograph

The concept behind Space Hippie imagines what life on Mars is like; there’s no space ship dropping off supplies any time soon, so you have to make do with what you have by using scraps and whatever space junk they can rummage. Basically, it’s sustainable design meets MacGyver.

The end result is a shoe with Nike’s lowest carbon footprint score ever.

The knits for the upper part of the shoe use their “space waste yarn," which comes from recycled materials like plastic bottles, t-shirts, and leftover yarn. The soles of the shoe contain a mixture of Nike foams, one of which is Nike Grind, a mix of recycled athletic gear (they also use this to make athletic tracks), resulting in a product that uses less CO2e.

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"Space Hippie product presents itself as an artifact from the future. It's avant-garde; it's rebelliously optimistic," said John Hoke, Nike Chief Design Officer, in a press release. "Space Hippie is also an idea. It is about figuring out how to make the most with the least material, the least energy, and the least carbon." 

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

"We believe the future for product will be circular," said Seana Hannah, Nike VP of Sustainable Innovation in the same press release. "We must think about the entire process: how we design it, how we make it, how we use it, how we reuse it, and how we cut out waste at every step. These are the fundamentals of a circular mindset that inform best practices."

The sustainable shoe comes out this spring, and we can’t wait to see the sustainable packaging behind it.

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