Oliver Cabell, a Brooklyn-based sneaker brand, launched a new range of 3D printed shoes called as Phoenix, made from recycled plastic bottles. These shoes were developed after two years of research focusing on how they can be a part of the solution rather than contribute to the ever-increasing plastic waste.
Oliver Cabell hopes that their 3D printed shoe will help start a new trend in eco-conscious footwear. According to the company, around 300 million tonnes of plastic is made every year but only 9% of it is actually recycled.
The shoes are 3D printed but the process actually starts from firstly, sterilising, washing and cutting the recycled plastic bottles to weave them into a fibre. The single piece of yarn then goes into a 3D printer, which prints the material to shape inside the machine and comes out fully formed. Over seven recycled bottles are used to make one pair.
The 3D printer only creates the shoe uppers. These uppers are joined to a comfortable and lightweight EVA sole, a cooling microfiber tongue, and an odour-reducing liner. The company insists that their 3D printed shoes are specifically made to be worn sockless. Additionally, these sneakers are machine-washable which makes it easy to clean them up.
According to Scott Gabrielson, founder of Oliver Cabell, “The brand’s mission has always been fairly simple…to marry the finest design, materials, and process with the latest technology, while leading the way for socially conscious businesses. We feel that the Phoenix is the culmination of what we’ve been striving for since we launched.”
Gabrielson added, “The process results in 80% less waste and a seamless upper with no cutting, stitching or discomfort. The Phoenix 3D printed shoe line is totally machine-washable and the shoes have been designed to be incredibly lightweight and comfortable. We couldn’t have it feel like you were wearing plastic.”
The 3D printed shoes are available in white and black colours and cost only a $95 a pair.
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