With every shoe we create, we intend to wow people when they see and touch them for the first time. We are driven by tinkering, experimenting, and exploring new material and design combinations.
Our Alpha project LIGHT WING is a perfect example. The goal was to design an impossibly light shoe that could weigh in at less than 150g per size 11. Working with Dupont TYVEK paper as our fundamental design material, we set out on a fifteen month journey to create a super cool casual shoe that is ultra light, super durable, and amazingly comfortable. After 500+ prototypes, thousands of rubber endurance tests, and a patent applicant dye formula, we have created the v1.0 LIGHT WING Trainers and Slip-ons in ten colors that wow everybody the first time they see them (and the second and third time too!).
So what is Tyvek and the other materials we make our shoes from, you ask?
Well Tyvek is flashspun high-density polyethylene fibers. In a nutshell, about 60 years ago, the smart guys over at Dupont created a material that they didn’t know exactly what it could be used for. In 1955, Jim White of Dupont noticed something strange happening when working with polyethylene in the lab, it started to “fluff”. He got to thinking that something more could be done with the material. A decade later, Tyvek was born as a commercialized product. Because the material is highly breathable, it can allow liquid vapor to pass through but not liquids, it has become one of the most popular house building materials in the United States for insulation. Check out the new build homes as you drive down the street next time, you will see the TYVEK brand all over the siding.
Not only is the material breathable, but it is impossibly strong. Virtually impossible to rip, the material is a perfect material for daily wear and tear of urban footwear life.
Because of it’s paper-like qualities, TYVEK becomes a canvas to our shoe designers. We have spent months and dozens of tests to perfect the elements of our inks to so our bold designs and colors remain vibrant after months of wearing and machine washing.
The outsole is made of a ULRSOLE material. ULR is ultra light weight, and amazingly durable. Put it this way, one of our founding partners, Joe Constanty, runs on these soles every day as his primary marathon trainer.