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Creating synthetic-free footwear uppers

Coats & Lenzing join forces to create footwear made using ProWeave technology with Tencel Lyocell Filament.

15th September 2023

Innovation in Textiles
 |  London, United Kingdom & Lenzing, Austria

Sports/​Outdoor, Sustainable

Coats Footwear has announced an exciting collaboration with specialty fibre maker Lenzing Group. Combining Coats Footwear’s innovative ProWeave technology with Lenzing’s innovative Tencel Lyocell Filament, the two companies have created dynamic re-imagined footwear uppers and fabrics, which combine sustainability and performance characteristics, and will be unveiled at Lineapelle in Milan next week.

In what is believed to be an industry first, the two companies have partnered in weaving Tencel Lyocell Filament using ProWeave – a unique patented jacquard weaving technology which can be used with a range of different fibres and yarns. The reimagined footwear uppers and fabrics will be used in the prototype of Circle Sportswear’s SuperNatural Runner - the first synthetic-free performance footwear to use Tencel Lyocell Filament blended with wool using ProWeave technology and other bio-based materials.

The innovative method and combination of technologies is said to enable the production of stylish, sustainable, super comfortable uppers and fabrics, which have an adaptive fit that functions like a second skin. According to Coats, the collaboration will be of interest to all footwear brands that want to improve supply chain traceability, bio-sustainability, and lower the carbon footprint associated with producing high-quality uppers and fabrics for a variety of applications.

Paul Jackson, ProWeave Business Unit Leader at Coats Footwear, said: “This is an incredibly exciting alliance for Coats Footwear, the Lenzing Group, and the wider industry. From day one, it was clear this was a natural partnership. Both companies have combined objectives when it comes to sustainability. Independently we are committed to helping companies lower the environmental impact of textile and footwear production processes by providing best-in-class materials and manufacturing technologies. Together, we’re revolutionizing the way uppers and materials can be made – giving footwear brands and manufacturers the chance to build high-level sustainable products in the most innovative way possible, with zero constraints on creativity.”

Nicole Schram, Global Business Development Manager, Apparel (Footwear) at Lenzing Group, added: “The footwear segment has always been innovative and offers endless possibilities for the development of technical applications of the Tencel brand. We are truly excited to partner with Coats Footwear to create exciting footwear uppers and fabrics that have botanic origins at heart. By combining the unique features of Tencel Lyocell staple fibres and filament and ProWeave technology, we believe the sky is the limit for the innovation of next-generation, planet-friendly footwear. We will continue to work closely with Coats Footwear and other industry partners to innovate materials for a dynamic footwear industry environment.”

In addition to Tencel Lyocell Filament, Coats Footwear is also working closely with Lenzing to explore the adoption of Tencel branded lyocell and modal fibres in footwear uppers and fabrics.

Discover more about the ProWeave and Tencel collaboration at Lineapelle at Booth (H02 in Hall 9). Lineapelle takes place in Milan from 19th to 21st September 2023.

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