Jil Sander and Birkenstock launch a collaboration
BRKENSTOCK and Jil Sander are pleased to present their first collaborative project. In a collection conceived by Creative Directors Lucie and Luke Meier for life in nature, the unisex shoes and sandals for Jil Sander+ blend the sense of luxury, comfort, and design of Jil Sander with the authentic Birkenstock silhouette.
The result of the combined effort are four different models; three of them radical redesigns of classic BIRKENSTOCK styles and one, a completely new design development. Balancing construction with BIRKENSTOCK’s DNA and know-how, the Meiers have found a synthesis, an edge, between purpose and design, giving a different spirit to sandals which have become contemporary icons.
‘We chose to work with Jil Sander, believing in the new interpretation of Lucie and Luke Meier. In our view, they have given this important brand relevance and authenticity. Together we achieved what we always strive for – real newness and product innovation.’ – Oliver Reichert, BIRKENSTOCK CEO.
“We have worn Birkenstocks for as long as we can remember. They are comfortable to wear, but also comforting. They have been with us in some remarkable places, from camping in the Canadian wilderness to sitting fireside in the Swiss Alps. However the quality and integrity of BIRKENSTOCK is what convinced us to work with them." - Lucie and Luke Meier, Creative Directors, Jil Sander.
The three existing models, the Arizona, Milano and the Berlin, are all reimagined, sporting an exaggerated silhouette with rounded, wider and higher profile and larger outsoles, resulting in a strong look and grounded footprint. The palette is clear, graphic, and natural: cream, olive and black.
Enlarged and elongated, the straps, in pure, raw edged calfskin or suede simultaneously add a rougher and softer feel to the sandals. The redesigned buckles are thinner, in precious satin nickel. The new Velan model is a reinvention of the Berlin closed-toe sandal, with a soft nappa strap to wrap around the ankles.
BIRKENSTOCK is a global lifestyle brand with a heritage in iconic footwear, rooted in the creation of the BIRKENSTOCK footbed. The brand that can be traced as far as 1774 is guided by the notion of quality and function in all its actions and across all categories. The concept of all-round wellbeing is developed into footwear, sleeping systems and natural cosmetics, increasingly translating the lifestyle vision of the brand heritage.
With around 5,500 employees worldwide, this traditional, sixth-generation family-run business is also one of the German footwear industry’s biggest employers. BIRKENSTOCK was already using the term “footbed” in the 1910s, giving it the meaning which is commonly understood by consumers all over the world to this day – as a synonym for outstanding comfort when walking and standing. By the early 1970s, BIRKENSTOCK had become a global player. Since 2021, the company is majority owned by L Catterton, the world's largest growth investor focused on the consumer goods industry, and Financière Agache, a holding company controlled by Agache, the holding company of the Arnault family.
Manufactured in Germany, the sandals are sold in more than 100 countries on all continents. BIRKENSTOCK also has a growing range of closed shoes, children’s shoes, and occupational footwear, as well as specialist products for orthopedic retailers, socks, bags, and belts. In 2017, BIRKENSTOCK added sleep systems and natural cosmetics (BIRKENSTOCK NATURAL SKIN CARE) to its portfolio of products. BIRKENSTOCK has 16 sites in Germany, in the states of North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Hesse, Bavaria, and Saxony. The long-standing enterprise also operates its own sales offices in the United States and Canada as well as in Brazil, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Denmark, Poland, Switzerland, Spain, the United Kingdom, France, Norway, Dubai and India.