It’s no secret that H&M has always had its finger on the pulse when it comes to collaborations. From Marni to Margiela, the retailer’s joint ventures’ life on the shop floor is always short-lived with most selling out in a matter of hours.
For its latest partnership, H&M has taken a slightly different approach and teamed up with Good News, a fast-growing London-based brand paving the way when it comes to footwear made with a smaller environmental impact than the industry norm. Some of the methods the brand is taking to lower the footprint of its products are reducing the number of processes and parts to its sneakers, using recycled and natural materials, and OEKO-TEX dyes as well as donating leftover stock to those in need.
Marking H&M’s first-ever footwear collaboration, the unisex drop comprises seven sneakers and one pair of slides made from a range of progressive materials such as Bananatex — a fiber woven from banana plants – Vegea – a leather alternative made from grapes – and Bloom Algae EVA for the soles (more details on the drop, here).
As the collaboration hits H&M stores online and around the world, we checked in with those who’ve already got a pair to get their thoughts on the release and the steps they're taking to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
What steps are you taking to lead a less impactful lifestyle? I try to apply sustainability in my everyday life step by step. I hardly eat any meat, and when I go grocery shopping it’s mostly biological and local. Because of my job, I receive a lot of clothing and it’s impossible to keep and wear everything. I have become more selective with gifting and I only accept gifts that I know will add value to my closet and which I can wear for years. I donate lots of my clothes to charity and I give them to family or friends so nothing goes to waste and everything will get a second life.
How do you feel about the partnership between H&M and Good News? I love the collaboration, the design is great and the message behind it is even better.
How has the way you think about sustainability changed in the last five years? A lot of my views today on sustainability have come from growing and learning about the power that falls within our hands within the choices we make daily. In school, I was only ever taught to recycle, but not the effects of and different ways of a more sustainable life.
What are your thoughts on the collaboration? I feel the partnership makes for a great bridge to the sustainability both brands believe and hold on to. I love the stability of the shoe, although it’s sustainable, I love how the shoe feels solid on foot.
Désiré Quadjo Mia
What steps are you taking to lead a less impactful lifestyle? I praise the lifestyle of using things until they‘re broken and fixing them again. Increasing the lifespan of everything we use is probably the easiest way to reduce our footprint.
What do you hope to see brands do in the future to reduce their impact on the environment? I would love to see brands use as many locally sourced & produced products as possible. The shirt I can buy in Germany doesn’t have to be the same as in Brazil, since they have completely different available resources. I wouldn’t even decrease the margin of profit, if advertised well.
What steps are you taking to lead a less impactful lifestyle? I'm making every effort to eliminate single-use plastics, eat less meat and fish, and support brands who are making valiant efforts to be sustainable in their supply chains, shipping materials, and beyond.
How do you feel about the partnership between H&M and Good News? H&M obviously has such a large platform and impact in the fashion industry, so I think it is their responsibility to share that audience with sustainable brands like Good News who are doing things differently and with the planet in mind. I hope H&M continues to partner with these smaller sustainable brands to increase awareness and overall continue to put sustainability front and center. Hopefully, this partnership with Good News is a sign of much more to come because the fashion industry still has a long way to go, but brands like Good News are paving the way for a more sustainable future.
How has the way you think about sustainability changed in the last five years? It has changed drastically I must say. I was always very aware of how important it is to take care of our earth since a young child with the few things we learned in school and a few commercials I have seen on tv. But I say the way I think about sustainability has changed for the better because of how many more people are much more in tune and on board with actually saving our planet. The message is just getting stronger and stronger and its getting hard to ignore which is important.
What do you love most about the sneaker? What I love the most about the sneaker is the color blocking. Beige and green go together so perfectly. I also really like how the sneaker has some chunkiness to it. Makes the sneaker more noticeable.
How has the way “sustainability” factors into your life changed in the last five years? I’ve only been really paying attention to my own footprint for the past three years. It changed my life in a way that I know I’m doing the right thing and I’m doing my part. The world is already kinda messed up, I personally don’t wanna be part of that.
What are your thoughts on the H&M x Good News collaboration? A very nice alternative and I was glad I could’ve been part of that as I’m personally paying a lot of attention to my footprint and trying to make it as small as I can. So trying to bring some awareness with dope shoes was definitely a great way of doing it.
The collection is available now at hm.com.