Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez

Birkenstock and Proenza Schouler are joining forces on a unisex collaboration inspired by the shoe company’s core ingredients of quality and function.

The collaboration features the signature Arizona and Milano styles reinterpreted with Proenza Schouler’s brand codes. The shoes, inspired by utilitarian workwear and athletic footwear, have Velcro closures instead of hardware buckles and are finished with industrial contrast topstitching to further refine the classic sandals while maintaining their traditional form and function.

The shoes are offered in black, white, ochre and silver, and are rendered in polished, specchio calf leather derived from past and present Proenza Schouler collections.

The collection will be available at select retailers worldwide in February. There are no plans to show them on the runway at Proenza Schouler’s fashion show Tuesday.

“Birkenstock thrives on innovation and challenges that talents like Proenza Schouler bring to our products. Achieving the balance between respecting our core principles and values, whilst delivering new design propositions, is what we look for in our partnerships,” said Oliver Reichert, chief executive officer of Birkenstock.

For the launch of this partnership, Birkenstock and Proenza Schouler recruited Juergen Teller and Peter Miles as creative collaborators. A three-dimensional visual concept will be designed that embodies the artistic approach of the designers’ process as well as the timelessness and elevated craftsmanship of Birkenstock’s manufacturing heritage.

An image from the Proenza Schouler x Birkenstock collaboration.  Courtesy shot.

“Birkenstock and Proenza Schouler both share a common respect and admiration for the craftsmanship and detailed work that goes into all of our products, and we are excited to celebrate these all-important qualities in our collaboration,” said Jack McCollough of Proenza Schouler.

Birkenstock has aimed to appeal to a more fashion-focused consumer. In recent months, the label has introduced a collaboration with Valentino as well as a slimmed-down footbed style, the Yao, for women whose preference is a narrower shape. This is in addition to partnerships with companies including Rick Owens and Opening Ceremony.


For more from WWD:

American Image Awards: Birkenstock, Company of the Year

Birkenstock Opens Global Paris Office

Birkenstock Pops Up With New Ephemeral Store in Milan


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