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How Superga has stayed relevant for over 100 years

Words by Maeve Kerr-Crowley

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

While new, shiny things will always be exciting, there’s something special about a product that stands the test of time. Superga’s classic 2750 tennis sneaker is perhaps one of the most special, with the style having endured for over 100 years.

The silhouette dates back to 1911, when its creator Walter Martiny designed a shoe for his tennis-loving wife.

At the time, tennis shoes were designed for playing on grass. Martiny wanted to make a shoe that would hold up against harder courts, such as pavement or clay. To do so, he worked with the same technology used to harden the soles of rubber boots – known as vulcanising.

This innovation made Superga’s classic 2750 tennis sneaker the first-ever sports shoe to feature a vulcanised sole.

Over a century later, the style is still a staple of the brand’s offering. Its slim silhouette and solid rubber base appear today across a wide colour range, readily available around the world. Superga’s Global Vice President of Sales, Lorenzo Boglione, believes the shoe has withstood the test of time and changing trends because of its simple, versatile and trusted design. “There is a strong customer base that wants authentic products that have been around for a long time, and have a true story and true heritage,” he says.

That story has seen the 2750 on the feet of numerous celebrities and athletes. Lorenzo lists Princess Diana, Alexa Chung and the Olsen twins among the brand’s customers, and cites Adriano Panatta’s Superga-clad win at the 1976 French Open as a historical highlight.

Other momentous achievements include collaborations with Chiara Ferragni, Comme des Garçons, Fendi and even local label Double Rainbouu. These partnerships have helped the brand cement its place in the fashion sphere, branching out into less sporty styles and offering platforms, high-tops and slides, as well as sneakers.

Of course, today’s environmentally conscious fashion climate means that sustainability can be a make or break factor for a brand’s success. Fortunately, Superga’s eco-credentials hold up pretty well against scrutiny.

“We have always been fairly sustainable since our inception over 100 years ago, which was before [sustainability] was even on everybody’s radar,” says Lorenzo.

“Our rubber is natural and we use raw cotton to create our canvas styles. But there are always new things happening and we work every day to be more environmentally friendly.”

As for what else to expect from the brand in the future, Lorenzo is excited about more opportunities to grow. Later this year, for example, Superga will be releasing a three-piece collection with Australian label Aje.

For now, you can find the timeless 2750 and a range of other styles online and from stockists across Australia.

superga.com.au

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