Stella McCartney Spent 3 Years Designing These Biodegradable Sneakers


(Image credit: Copenhagen Fashion Summit)

For Stella McCartney, it's lonely at the top of the sustainable fashion movement. Speaking at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, an inspiring two-day event about all things sustainability, McCartney admitted that she's "doing it alone to a certain extent" when it comes to using the best eco-friendly and cruelty-free materials—and she could use more support from the industry. 

"We need to be encouraged," she told moderator Graydon Carter at the summit. "I don't get benefits from this. My margins are smaller. I get taxed 30% more for non-leather goods going into the United States… How do we get encouragement?"

But McCartney has never backed down from her commitment to the cause, and her latest sneaker launch marks another step forward for her brand. "Glue is made out of either animal or fish bones (or god knows what other body parts)," she said at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit. "So we actually spent about three years developing a sneaker we just launched called The Loop, which has not got any glue in it at all. It's all biodegradable, and I'm very proud of that shoe." 

Another example of how she's forging the way? Her use of sustainable viscose. "Viscose [also known as rayon] is from trees; it's a tree pulp. The fashion industry cuts down about 150 million trees each year for viscose… We are probably now the only fashion house in the world using sustainable viscose. But I would love help. I would love everyone to do that. If we grouped together, we could all be doing viscose from a sustainable source." Here's hoping that more top-of-class brands will join McCartney at the top of the movement sooner rather than later—indeed, the Copenhagen Fashion Summit proved there are definitely more-than-worthy contenders.

Scroll down to shop Stella McCartney's new glue-less sneakers. 

Listen to Her Full Talk at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit: 

Associate Director, Fashion News

Erin got her start as a Who What Wear intern over 13 years ago—back when the site only published a single story per day. (Who What Wear has since increased that number twentyfold.) She graduated magna cum laude from USC, which is how she ended up moving to Los Angeles from her hometown of San Diego. In college, she also interned at Refinery29, where she was promoted to editorial assistant and then assistant editor. After nearly three years at R29, she came back to WWW in 2016, where she currently holds the title of Associate Director of Fashion News (as well as the unofficial title of resident royal expert—in case you haven't noticed her numerous Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton stories). She spends her days trying to incorporate her idols, Anna Wintour and Roger Federer, into as many stories as possible. Outside of work, she loves tennis, classic rock, traveling, and smothering her dog with affection.