It is inevitable: No matter how expensive your kicks are, they will degrade over time to the point of being unwearable. While you may resurrect those tired sneakers with sole swaps and what-not, they do not come easy, especially if your pair has not been retro for the past 5, 10, or even 20 years.
For Japanese artist Kosuke Sugimoto, he has a rather unusual idea: since these sneakers are unwearable, why not repurpose them into something environmentally friendly?
This gave birth to his “Shoetree” artwork series. The idea is simple: Instead of letting these unwearable sneakers rot in a box, he applies dry moss to the shoe’s delicate and fragile parts. This method preserves the overall sneaker from deteriorating further. To complete the look, he places a potted plant inside the shoe.
“I like the curves of sneakers and going along the line, putting on moss also fulfills the role of protection and prevents the collapse of the sole,” Sugimoto said in an interview with Sole Collector.
Sugimoto’s idea gives a breath of life to these old shoes. In fact, Sugimoto’s work has been featured in several stores and galleries around Tokyo.
Visit his site to check out his other shoe garden creations. Are you willing to do this to your old and crumbling sneakers?