Material Innovation in the Form of Circular & Plastic-Free Vegan Shoes

There’s vegan leather and then there’s vegan leather: With their latest collaboration with Natural Fiber Welding, NYC-based vegan fashion brand Brave GentleMan is on the cutting edge of ethical innovation in fashion — or, how founder Joshua Katcher puts it; “entering the bio-based renaissance.”

Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist
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August 30, 2022

Words — Eric Mirbach
Photos — Brave GentleMan

Vegan leather, partly because of Fast Fashion Multis using the term to greenwash their cheap plastic products (while pricing them higher), has a bit of a bad rep in ethical fashion cycles. Which is a shame, as data indicates that in general, vegan successor-materials outperform the outdated original — not only when it comes to their impact on the planet, but (obviously so) on the lives of animals.

But that does not mean there’s no room for improvement. Vegan fashion, just like vegan food, is a playground where, through limiting the use of go-to-materials used everywhere else, real innovation is fostered. And that innovation is now here.

Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist
Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist
Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist

The capsule is rounded out by these accessories, made in the same innovative material.

The Material

The focal material of the collection is the NFW-developed Mirum, an innovative, low-carbon, all-natural textile with uncanny versatility. Mirum has the ability to replicate the look of an array of materials, all different in look & feel, i.e. leather or carbon fiber. What’s more, the life cycle of products are optimized, since they can either be recycled into new Mirum textile or returned to the earth.

When a material innovation like that meets a brand like Brave GentleMan, exciting things can happen!

The Brand

Established in 2010 by designer Joshua Katcher, Brave GentleMan is the world’s first vegan menswear brand, known for delivering classic, high quality fashion and footwear. Some of their shoe styles have been refined year after year, making them new classics — which have now been reimagined in Mirum for this capsule collection, together with one brand new style, the Sculpture Sneaker.

All shoes are made at a cutting-edge all-vegan shoe factory in Brazil, and come with fairly harvested rubber and a cork insole.

Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist
Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist
Brave GentleMan x Mirum – Capsule Collection - Vegan, Plastic-Free, Circular Men's Footwear - Antagonist

The Future is Here

This collection is a first glance into the future of material innovation — a topic Brave GentleMan designer Joshua Katcher wrote about for Antagonist in the past.

It seems like that future is right around the corner, and owning a piece of this first capsule collection might mean owning a piece of modern fashion history.


The collection is now up for presale, with only a few days left! If you’re interested in purchasing footwear history, check out the Brave GentleMan website today.

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