EcoSalon at Stockholm Fashion Week: Swedish Hasbeens SS12

Swedish Hasbeens present their spring/summer ’12 collection inspired by olympian Wilma Rudolph.

Even if it wasn’t one of my favorite brands ever, I would have been deeply impressed by Swedish Hasbeens’ presentation of their spring/summer 2012 collection in Stockholm last week. The basement of a shady nightclub establishment located in one of the busiest traffic circles in the city had been transformed into a retro-style gym, complete with a wooden gym floor and old-school wood benches for seats.

The collection was presented by a team of gymnasts, performing routines while wearing the shoes. I found this slightly distracting but incredibly inspiring. If there’s one thing (except gorgeous shoes) that Swedish Hasbeens excel at it’s creating distinctly different retro-vibe campaigns around each of their collections. Luckily, the shoes were all available on display for a closer look after the show. Big news for the upcoming season is that Swedish Hasbeens now make (very good-looking) men’s shoes as well.

Inspiration was drawn from sports heroes of the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s, especially Wilma Rudolph, who grew up paralyzed from polio as the 20th of 22 children and was still able to set amazing world records and win three gold medals at the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome. This showed a new generation that anything is possible, regardless of race, gender or background.

“We must never forget what sport has meant for the equality of women and men and how it still makes us stronger in body and mind,” says Emy Blixt, Designer and Creative Director of Swedish Hasbeens.

The SS ’12 collection was highly inspired by classic sport shoes such as the Saddle Shoe, the Driving Shoe, the Beach Sandal and the Bowling Boot. All these models are included in updated and often unisex form in this new, diverse collection.

“The challenge for the SS ’12 collection has been to be innovative while still staying true to the concept and the result is a collection inspired by Hasbeens like Wilma and the active lifestyle of the 1940-50s, which made fashion sportier and more comfortable,” says Blixt.

Swedish Hasbeens are always made from sustainable materials like vegetable tanned chrome-free leathers, natural rubber soles and real cork. Like the legends of the past, they only grow better with age.

EcoSalon was on the scene for their SS ’12 show. Here’s some highlights.

Johanna Björk

Johanna is a sustainable fashion writer currently based in Ojai, CA. Read her weekly On Trend column to learn what's new in eco fashion.