NATURAL SELECTION The Objectification of the more

The project started with the examination of how 3D printing could alter footwear architecture and identify new design constructions. Observations were made that whilst the potential of this new technology offers many benefits the materiality was limited. There seems to be a lack of natural materials used. This lead to the critical theory 3D print is the right process but maybe using the wrong materials?

So practical research was made into the use of non wovens as a potential material arrangement which could be developed by specialists to drive the materials used in 3D print.

A collection of varied natural non woven materials were selected and applied to a methodology in a masters educational context. By concentrating the fibres and adding binders, the properties and characteristics could change, producing both soft and hard material over one continuous surface.

Innovative materials used in the product and furniture industries were “borrowed” and applied to fashion footwear raising further challenges as to what materials are acceptable, in a trend lead fashion context. The design form was the element unifying the collection.

As the project progressed it became evident, synthetic biology will converge with 3D print to offer solutions to these issue. A designer’s understanding of trends and emotional qualities of materials make them key to drive the new technologies in fashion and science.

A special thanks to all my sponsors and supporters

J.Dittrich & Sohne
Daimer Filz
Nano Solutions

All photos
Stephanie Potter Corwin

Felt Shoes

The Felt Shoes are the foundation pieces in the Natural Selection collection. Made from 100% wool felt of high quality from Daimer Filze  , essentially felt tubes are moulded into and around 3D printed forms using millinery techniques. Binders are stratigically added to vary densities creating hollow heels and suspended foot beds. This reduces components and…

Hemp Shoes

Hemp non-woven sheets were steamed and compression moulded with soft/ hard wool felt socks. The socks were suspended an essentially moulded tube with ledges. Binders gave further structure to the heel. These hemp sheets are used in automotive interior body panels, trays and furniture.  

Paper Pulp Study

This is a 3D printed study of the platform for the proposed form and design using Paper Pulp material from the company Sodra. A ‘soft/hard’ wool felt sock is used for the upper.  is a material which under heat and compression moulding can process into a bioresin type plastic. Durapulp has the strength to be…

Cocolok Shoes

The Cocolok shoes were made of coconut, latex and Bioresin with a wool felt sock. The material was left exposed to go some way to show off it’s beauty. Coir from the company ENKEV is coco fibre collected from the coconut husk. It is transformed into sheets providing excellent ventilation. The sheets are sprayed with natural…

Flax Shoes

A non woven 100% Flax was explored. The material is produced by Norafin Industries in Germany. and won an innovation award in 2011. It is light weight, tear-resistent durable, flexible, comfortable and easy to impregnate. Applications include public transportation/aviation, wind energy, wire & cable application, roll covers, body armour & ballistic protection, motorsports and yachting.  The material was…

Felt Leather Shoes

These shoes take the structure and material of the felt shoes and play around with the fit of the top line. The felt material has differing  fit points than a conventional court shoe. Leather was used as retaining element to the higher court line. The 5mm thickness of the felt sitting in between the skin…