3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen
and Rem D Koolhaas

| 19 comments

3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas

Fashion designer Iris van Herpen and shoe designer Rem D Koolhaas have collaborated to create 3D-printed shoes that look like tree roots.

The shoes were presented today at Paris Fashion Week during Iris van Herpen's couture show.

3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas

Koolhaas, founder of shoe brand United Nude, worked with van Herpen to create a dozen pairs of shoes for the Wilderness Embodied show.

"Iris is very dramatic with her concepts and the shapes she wanted were only possible with 3D printing - they are almost like a sculpture on your feet, mimicking nature," said Koolhaas.

3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas

"For me, fashion has always been about setting your own boundaries and making a statement," said van Herpen. "This time around, Rem and I wanted to create something that echoed the beauty and wilderness of the natural world, so we decided to use the technological capabilities of 3D printing to bring this concept to life through a pair of shoes."

3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas

The shoes were printed using Objet Connex and Objet Eden printers made by Stratasys, the company that last month acquired desktop 3D-printer company Makerbot.

Van Herpen is one of the first fashion designers to experiment with 3D printing. In an interview with Dezeen earlier this year she said: "Everybody could have their own body scanned and just order clothes that fit perfectly." See all our stories about Iris van Herpen.

3D printed shoes by Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas

Previous collaborations between Van Herpen and United Nude include shoes featuring heels with semi-precious stone spikes and shoes with fang-like heels. See all our stories about United Nude.

See all our stories about 3D printing.

Here's some more info from Stratasys:


Stratasys 3D Printed Shoes Dazzle at Paris Fashion Week, Iris van Herpen’s Couture Show

Iris van Herpen collaborates with designer Rem D Koolhaas to design intricate geometries of nature-inspired shoes for latest couture collection at Paris Fashion Week

 Minneapolis, MN; Rehovot, Israel - July 2, 2013 - Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ: SSYS), a leading manufacturer of 3D printers and production systems for prototyping and manufacturing, today announced the unveiling of 12 pairs of 3D printed shoes on the famous catwalks of Paris Fashion Week at Iris van Herpen's Couture show ‘Wilderness Embodied.' In collaboration with Dutch designers Iris van Herpen and Rem D Koolhaas, Stratasys 3D printed the shoes with a number of intricate geometries designed to mimic elements of nature and push the boundaries of fashion design.

"For me, fashion has always been about setting your own boundaries and making a statement," commented van Herpen. "This time around, Rem and I wanted to create something that echoed the beauty and wilderness of the natural world, so we decided to use the technological capabilities of 3D printing to bring this concept to life through a pair of shoes."

Following the storming success of van Herpen's recent collaboration with Stratasys, which saw the creation of an elaborate 3D printed dress together with Professor Neri Oxman, van Herpen teamed up with D Koolhaas to design a tree root inspired shoe. Featuring intricate lattices that wind around the foot, the shoe mirrors the natural growth of tree roots. The shoes were 3D printed using Stratasys rigid opaque black and white materials on the PolyJet-based multi-material Objet Connex and Objet Eden 3D Printers whose high resolution enabled the complex geometries integral to the design.

"We knew the capability of the technology in terms of quality, immediacy and creativity from our previous collaboration on the 3D printed dress with Professor Neri Oxman and Stratasys. Yet it still amazes us how 3D printing can produce such beautiful shoes that perform remarkably under the stress of being walked in," explains van Herpen. "The Stratasys rigid black material was fantastic in giving the shoes a glossy look that would catch the eyes of the audience at the show."

This is the first time D Koolhaas, Creative Director and Founder of United Nude, an architecture inspired shoe company, has produced and showcased an entire 3D printed shoe on the catwalk. According to Koolhaas, the combination of Van Herpen's inspirational ideas, Stratasys 3D printing innovation, and United Nude's shoe engineering expertise will hopefully inspire shoe designers of the future to unleash their own creativity and explore new approaches previously unthinkable.

"I'm thrilled with the results, they're stunning and original. Iris is very dramatic with her concepts and the shapes she wanted were only possible with 3D printing - they are almost like a sculpture on your feet, mimicking nature," said Koolhaas. "Working with Stratasys also enabled us to quickly test the shoes during the design process and adjust our concepts for optimal function and form. So it was easy to make changes and get exactly what we wanted. Once we locked down the perfect design, we printed 12 pairs of fashion shoes in less than a week."

"We are delighted to again be working with such prominent fashion designers on such a prestigious collection. This is the second time for us at the Paris Fashion Show with Iris van Herpen and each time we are amazed at her ability to re-invent fashion with the help of Stratasys 3D printing," said Arita Mattsoff, Vice President Marketing for Stratasys. "We believe that 3D printing has become a true creative-enabler for the fashion world.  Designers are no longer limited with conventional manufacturing. They can now produce virtually anything they can imagine. For that reason, we feel that 3D printing will become more and more an integral part of fashion design curriculums."

  • bob

    Pubes moonboots.

  • zizi

    It was worth to have 3d print technology for this! A great step for mankind.

  • pet

    One could print a giant p..is and everybody would eat it up, only because it’s 3D printed. Give me a break.

  • Airborne

    I woke up this morning and got the 3D print blues…

  • blah

    She’s like the Alexander McQueen of our times.

    • http://www.dailygrail.com Red Pill Junkie

      More like Lightning McQueen – Ka CHOW! :P

  • notbot

    I’m beginning to think that printing guns was one of the better ideas of how to employ 3D printing…

  • wat?

    Since when was Rem Koolhaas a shoe designer?

  • http://www.niels-schubert.com niels

    These lumps are suited to make women look bad.

  • Concerned Citizen

    When a shoe has simply melted, how can you claim to have designed it?

  • Stephen Dedalus

    If H. P. Lovecraft had been shoe designer probably would have come up with something like this.

  • David

    Amazing!

  • Paopao

    Ugliest piece of design of the last few centuries!

  • ALAB

    I think the foot is the accessory here.

  • Susan

    Is there no end to the arrogance and ego of these “designers” and the stupidity of women who will blindly follow them – breaking their necks – because they have no ability to make their own judgement and no basis for deciding on anything related to aesthetics in architecture and design.

    These, and the ones by Zaha Hadid, are outrageous and awful. Enough.

    • Fer3

      Design can also be about moving visions forward, experimenting and making shapes where they formerly didn’t belong. Beauty as you know it is not all that matters.

      Sometimes the experimental can be cool by being fresh and new; perhaps not easy to immediately understand for all. If you look longer, beauty can/will appear. Take your time to digest and wake up to the future!

      • Airborne

        The argument of not being understood is not valid before a few decades have passed and the design has proved its validity. The other argument of moving forward is a platitude. I believe Susan made a strong argument.

        Up until 3D printing became readily available, plastic was considered an inferior material for shoe design. Suddenly, because with 3D printing one can create these outlandish wriggles only with plastic, it is considered a useful material.

        It is true that these designs have no foot in reality and only exist because some fashion magazines buy pictures from the catwalks.

        • jake

          That’s what high fashion is. It’s an art form, not supposed to be worn in real life, although like high art, there can be an influence on the forms of more useful things.