Material muse: salmon leather

I tore this page out of an airline magazine a long time ago and upon finding it again in a pile of clippings I had saved, I was reintroduced to the ES Salmon Leather company and reminded what great potential this amazing material could have for custom shoes. ES Salmon Leather works to repurpose the skin that would otherwise be discarded by the salmon industry and so it is therefore incredibly eco-friendly. The resulting salmon leather is stitched together to minimize waste and create full yardage of strong, flexible, and beautifully textured material. It is already being used in specialty fashion projects such as this salmon leather Chuck Taylor by Converse, new for Spring 2012 in Brazil.

Isaac Mizrahi also created a salmon leather dress for the “Design for a Living World” exhibition at New York’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in 2009. I love how his treatment of die cutting the material into paillettes emphasizes the radiant scales of the leather. In an interview with Smithsonian magazine, Mizrahi admitted that he is not about “to sell [his] artistic principles short for the sake of going green.” What makes the salmon skin so appealing is that it is both eco friendly and inherently glamorous.

Mackenzie Stroh / Cooper-Hewitt Museum, SI

I believe the unique, luxurious, and sustainable properties of salmon skin would make for a perfect transformation into a Katie Blauer custom shoe, especially for a bride looking for the epitome of rustic elegance or the ultimate eco-wedding. If you’re interested in a pair of salmon leather shoes by Katie Blauer, please contact us.

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