Stella McCartney: 'Adidas took a lot of convincing to make vegan Stan Smiths'

Stella McCartney

Stella McCartney spent a lot of time Adidas bosses to make vegan versions of their classic Stan Smith sneakers.

The British designer is a champion of sustainable and cruelty-free fashion, and was inspired to create an eco- and animal-friendly alternative after getting a vegetarian pair of Stan Smiths for her birthday from husband Alasdhair Willis.

"It got me thinking... so every time I saw the Adidas team, I'd say, 'Why can't you make all your Stan Smiths veggie?' It took a lot of convincing, and then finally we collaborated on the first pair of vegan Stan Smiths last year," the 48-year-old told

Since their debut in 2018, the trainers are now made from a mix of man-made materials, which are not harmful to the environment.

"The 'leather' upper is synthetic. The Stans usual glues were replaced with animal-free alternatives because glues typically used in the production of shoes and accessories derive from fish or animals, and are full of chemicals which are harmful to the environment," she explained.

Stella's vegan Stan Smiths feature tiny punched-out stars instead of the iconic Adidas stripes, and the designer even included rainbow laces on the shoe in an effort to be inclusive.

"The Stella Stan Smith is unisex as it was important that the theme was inclusive and for everyone," Stella added, noting that she was "very proud" of the new design.

With the launch of her latest vegan shoe with the sports giant, the designer is aware that consumers are more conscious of sustainability in fashion, and noted that she and Adidas now have a whole new customer base.

"So many young people came into our stores to enquire about the Stan Smith, asking questions about what the trainer was made with, telling our staff about why it was important for them to choose a vegan shoe over a leather one and what it represented. This is the future," Stella added.

The iconic sneakers are priced at $302 (£235) and available to buy from 2 December.

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