Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 2 days to go!

Thursday, October 18, 2012 This week we will be counting down to the start of Dutch Design Week 20-28 October in Eindhoven, which will premiere the spectacular exhibition ‘Watch our Steps’ organized by SLEM, a new education and innovation centre for footwear.

Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 2 days to go!Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 2 days to go!

The exhibition will feature the best footwear graduation works from academies around the world, from Hiko Mizuno and Bunka College in Tokyo, to Polimoda in Florence and London College of Fashion to ArteZ in Arnhem and many more. It promises to be the footwear event of the year!

The DDW audience can vote for who they think has the best work and the final decision will be made on Friday, October 26 by an expert jury, which includes Liza Snook of the Virtual Shoe Museum! The winner will receive the Global Footwear Design Award, which involves tailor made training and consulting provided by the broad network of SLEM. This will help the winner make a head start with his or her career; in whichever direction he or she would like to move forward within the shoe business.

From now on we will give you a sneak preview each day, until Saturday the 20th, when the exhibition opens and you can all go and see it for yourselves and/or get the digital catalogue from!

Only two more days before the ‘Watch our Steps’ exhibition opens at Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven…. we are so excited to be in the jury who decides on the winner! Our fellow judges are Jan Jansen, Charles Bergmans and René van den Berg, Holland’s top three shoe designers, Inge Specht, curator of the Dutch Shoe and Leather Museum, Bea de Roo, renowned footwear forecaster and Nicoline van Enter, creative director of SLEM, the footwear education and innovation centre that organizes the exhibition.

Head of the jury and presenter of the Global Footwear Design Award Night on October 26 is Victoria Koblenko, famous actress and professional shoe addict! You can join the award night on Friday evening the 26th, from 19:30 to 22:30. It promises to be a great evening for all shoe lovers, professionals and amateurs alike, with inspiring lectures by René van den Berg, Nicoline van Enter and Diane Becker, design consultant for Camper footwear. Tickets cost 25 euros and are available through

Only two more days before ‘Watch our Steps’ opens at Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven, in hall 2 of the Klokgebouw at Strijp S! One of the reasons we are so excited about this exhibition is that it features work that has never been shown before on this side of the ocean. For instance, it includes a collection of works by graduates of Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry from Tokyo, a vocational school that focuses on all kinds of craft. As the name implies, the school started out with courses in jewelry making, but now also includes footwear and leather goods, among others. This year they were the first school in the world to start a course in bespoke bicycle making, which for us Dutchies is probably the next coolest thing after footwear!

We picked two styles out of the total of twenty that are featured at the exhibition. Takuya Takizawa demonstrates the great emphasis that is put on craft at Hiko Mizuno. Starting by wrapping rope around a shoe, Takuya, better known as Takky, ended up with what we call ‘the spaghetti sneaker’. Thin tubes of natural latex rubber have been wrapped, twisted and woven around a neoprene sock, also covering the outsole. This design proves just how well sneakers and craft can go together.

The second design is by Manami Sato. She was inspired by shoes that are half buried in sand, so you cannot see the toe. This way it seems as if you are wearing a giant shoe, part of which is missing, or even if you are simply missing part of your feet! At first sight these shoes might seem unwearable, but the inside hides a normal pump.

Dutch Design Week
SLEM Hall 2 of the Klokgebouw at Strijp S

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