Graduate Fashion Week 2021: the final three candidates for the Footwear Design Award

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We recently introduced the wonderful candidates for this year’s Footwear Design Award at Graduate Fashion Week. Now – while the talent and ideas represented were all amazing – we have had to narrow down the candidates to just three. After analysing each project, we have decided on the final projects that can win the award.

It has been a hard decision, but below you can see the excellent projects that we have chosen. Innovation, creativity and originality are represented throughout each one, offering design concepts that really look to the future. From eco-friendly motives to striking sculptural designs, have a scroll and see for yourself…

Charlie Irwin – BA Footwear & Accessories – University of Northampton

Third-year student Charlie Irwin’s work is titled ‘Space’, and it explores the concept of helping customers get outdoors to escape their busy modern lives. This will be conducted with impact and waste in mind, made possible through re-purposing damaged and abandoned items.

“Collaborating with National Clean Up teams – whose aim it is to keep our green spaces safe and tidy – Space brand aims to utilise second-hand materials found at these locations, such as tents, sleeping bags, scuba and climbing gear and much more”

Lucy Roberts – Footwear Design – De Montfort University

Lucy Roberts is a third-year Footwear Design Undergraduate who has a passion for creating innovative footwear concepts. For this project, Lucy took design cues from sculptural pieces of art.

“For this project, I wanted to produce a new, innovative approach to footwear design. I aimed to create expressive, sculptural, high-end women’s dress shoes that push the boundaries of conventional, stereotypical footwear.”

“Each individual design was developed from different Mariko Mori sculptures, which I used as inspiration for my initial sketches. I further refined these to produce captivating shoe designs.”

Renata Fejes-Nagyfejeo – BA (Hons) Fashion Design – Salford University

Renata Fejes-Nagyfejeo’s work is based on her own created narrative, where the year is 152 after global extinction due to a nuclear war. The project focuses on another chance for mankind to better themselves with a new system with improved ethics.

“I speculated their beliefs and behaviours, as well as the otherworldly landscapes and distorted living conditions that command new ways of existing”

Renata explained how this was shown on her shoe designs, “I worked with modelling clay first to create shapes I could then cover with latex. Next, I scanned in my own foot and manipulated it in ZBrush to achieve the exact desired shape, which after was 3D printed and covered in latex.”

It all came together for the final design, creating a “high heeled boot with ruched vamp and a toe shaped front. The calf is recycled leather, seamlessly blended with the latex toe box. The flexible material didn’t need a fastening, so the centre front is just slit open.”

Also, we’d just like to say another quick shoutout to all the great candidates! Honourable mentions to Ryan Roddy, Poppy Griffiths, and Jen Bradley – we were really impressed with your work and we hope to see more of your footwear concepts in the future.

Keep checking the size? blog and socials for content running up to Graduate Fashion Week!

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