Introducing: The Nike SB Janoski Flyleather Remastered
Made using revolutionary Flyleather, one of Nike’s latest fabric innovations, the iconic Nike SB Janoski has been rebooted for 2020 as a demonstration of the brands commitment to better sustainable practises. As a signal of what’s to come within skateboarding footwear and the future of the Nike SB line, developing the Flyleather material has been no easy feat but the results are set to change the industry forever.
With a vision to bring leather back to the performance material it was once considered to be whilst also reducing the environmental impact associated with leather manufacturing, Nike set out to develop their own sustainable version of the material that retains the look, feel and even smell of the original fabric. The process of creating Flyleather involves gathering large pieces of unused leather from tanneries that may otherwise have gone to landfill, which are then reduced in size and dried to make them suitable for binding to create larger pieces of ‘new’ material. Natural pigments are applied to the fabric to achieve the desired tone before final vigorous testing which examines each roll for its strength and integrity. It has taken Nike years to get to a place where they feel content with the finish of this innovative material which is almost indistinguishable when compared to traditional leather in its durability, softness and aesthetic appeal. With the use of waste material at the core of the fabrics manufacture, the amount of water used to create Flyleather is significantly less in comparison to a conventional process, in addition to the overall carbon footprint also being reduced. Additionally, it has been noted that Flyleather is 40% lighter and 5x more abrasion resistance than full-grain leather, so whether you’re drawn to the new model for its sustainable credits or not, the finish of the latest Janoski model is appealing for its improved capabilities of standing up to repetitive wear during demanding skate sessions.
As the best selling footwear model from Nike SB, the Nike Janoski was originally developed during the early 00’s in collaboration with pro skateboarder Stefan Janoski who sought a skate shoe that improved the connection between the rider and the board, with as little material in between as possible, without jeopardizing comfort or protection. Standing out against other designs on the market of the time that continued to build upon the notoriously chunky skate shoe designs of the ‘90s, there was hesitance from the Nike design team around the appeal of the Janoski but thanks to a clear vision from the pro rider who refused to put his name on something he didn’t believe in, the low-cut, lightweight Janoski model was released in 2009 and changed the course of modern skate footwear forever.
The Nike SB Janoski Flyleather Remastered is set to make history again as the first sustainable skate-focused shoe that retains much of the original design’s best loved qualities, but caters to a need for improved environmental consideration. Delivering flexible performance and all-day comfort, the pure platinum coloured uppers of the introductory model are of course made from the previously mentioned innovative Flyleather with the felted back side of the material providing a smooth yet durable finish. Embroidered with a reduced amount of zig zag stitch lines, signature Swoosh decoration remains on either side of the foot in addition to a woven label showing collaborative branding on the perforated tongue. Colour matched recycled flat laces ensure a secure fastening and within the shoe the foam sockliner holds a Zoom Air unit to ensure responsive cushioning. In addition to the light brown outsole, and for the first time in Nike SB history, the tape between the midsole and upper is made using Nike Grind material - which has already been successfully used for turf fields, courts, walkways and playgrounds - with a speckled finish that draws attention to the fact that it is constructed from surplus manufacturing materials and athletic footwear. As always, the rubber has been thinned out in key areas for a lightweight, broken-in feel from unboxing.
Having already utilised Flyleather for new versions of classic styles such as the infamous ‘70s Cortez design, Nike continues to improve their own design library with sustainable alternatives which has resulted in 75% of all their shoes and apparel now containing some recycled materials. As a brand that many look to for inspiration and the latest sportswear innovation, with factories located around the world that host over 1,088,415 workers, Nike feels it is their duty to lead the way in creating and crafting the future of design. Inspired by the Global Fashion Agenda, in the spring of 2019 during the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, Nike unveiled their Circularity guide which shares their principles and vision for how they plan to adhere to waste avoidance, green chemistry, circular packaging and the use of environmentally preferred materials. Designs such as the new Nike SB Zoom Janoski FL Remastered demonstrates the progressions that have already been made, in addition to a natural dye inspired Plant Colour Collection of ‘beautifully sustainable’ footwear, tinted using plants and natural foliage made up of over 70% recycled manufactured waste.
Marking the beginning of environmentally conscious, circular-driven designs becoming commonplace within Nike’s offering that has been years in the making, like many brands who are working hard to adapt to new requirements that are necessary to reduce the damaging impact upon earth, Nike see the need for improved sustainable practise not as a hindrance but as an opportunity to really put their innovative reputation to the test whilst letting nature be their key source for inspiration to create a better world.
The Nike SB Janoski Flyleather Remastered will be available on Monday 7th September 2020 at 08:00AM (BST).
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