Los Angeles-based running shoe brand Athletic Propulsion Labs (APL) has partnered with The Woolmark Company on the first technical-knit shoe to hit the global market with the wool certification trademark.
The TechLoom Breeze Merino Wool collection is APL’s most sustainable and lightest running shoe to date, made with 80 percent Australian merino wool and knitted with APL’s patented, stretch-rebound TechLoom upper to deliver strength, greater elasticity and maximum support during performance and sports lifestyle activities. It’s the first launch in a series of long-term certified wool product collaborations between APL and The Woolmark Company.
Over two years in development, the certified Wool Rich Blend engineered knit is designed to keep its shape using filament-wrapped wool yarns to add resistance to abrasion and extend wear. The yarns are also stain- and odor-resistant, naturally regulating the temperature of feet. Utilizing the latest fully fashioned knitting technology, the shoe is knitted to its final shape, reducing the amount of fabric waste often caused by regular cut-and-sew techniques. The knitting technology also allows for seamless design features such as breathable panels. Other popular brands such as Allbirds offer wool sneakers, but APL has taken a more “luxury performance” stance in the market.
Cofounder Adam Goldston explained, “After spending more than 18 months engineering and testing, we finally created the first technical-knit footwear to be certified by The Woolmark Company, which we couldn’t be more excited about. Australian merino wool is a naturally sustainable super fiber that helps protect against odor, is incredibly strong, yet is light enough to be worn during all of your workouts. This is just the beginning of many more innovations to come from APL in the coming months and years.”
His brother and cofounder Ryan Goldston elaborated, “What truly makes this product unique is its luxurious hand feel thanks to the inclusion of merino wool yarn, but it also has amazing performance capabilities, too. I’m confident that when our customers put on the shoes, they’ll be blown away by how light, comfortable and luxurious they are.”
The shoe will be available beginning Dec. 3 in both men’s and women’s sizes for $250 at athleticpropulsionlabs.com. After launching in June 2014 the company helped define the “luxury performance” segment and is now carried in over 300 retailers including Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, Net-a-porter, Mr Porter, Barneys New York, Bloomingdale’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Shopbop.com, Lululemon, East Dane, Lane Crawford, Level Shoes, Matches Fashion, Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Le Bon Marché.