Designer Simone Post turns “hard to recycle” old trainers into rugs

Dutch designer Simon Post has managed to recycle old trainers, which are said to be the hardest fashion items to recycle, and turn them in to rugs.

The textile and product designer was commissioned by Adidas to turn old trainers into rugs for use at their Champs-Élysées store in Paris.

Trainers are among the hardest products to recycle because they are made from so many different components, often involving multiple types of hard and soft plastic, metals and textiles held together with very strong glue.

The German based company I:CO collects used clothes and shoes worldwide. They recycle unwearable sport shoes into little rubber pallets. Simone took this raw material to experiment with for the Adidas rugs.

For the Stripped Down Stripes project, Simone Post reinterpreted the distinctive stripes of the Adidas brand and designed an effective pattern. Looking at the rugs from a distance, the colours of the graphic pattern appears black and white, but viewed up-close all the original colour varieties of the former sportshoes appear.

Simone Post said: “The rugs are a great test case to explore working with recycled shoes and the different ways to process this material. The result is a wonderful series of prototypes. The knowledge obtained in the process opens up many more application possibilities.”

The designer, who is well-known for her waste Vlisco fabrics to make rugs, endeavours for her designs to be sustainable, either in terms of material use or with reference to cultural heritage like traditions, storytelling, clothing and traditional skills and technologies.

Studio Simone Post

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyle including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at


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