Sandra Plantos' abstract concrete shoes purposefully prevent movement


Irish footwear designer Sandra Plantos has created a collection of shoes that are too heavy to walk in (+ movie).

Plantos designed the Presence shoes as part of her Footwear master's degree at London College of Fashion, after studying architecture at University College Dublin.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Pain footwear

Her concept for "immovable footwear" resulted in a range of four designs made from cast concrete, reinforcing steel (rebar) and plywood.

The weight of the materials and forms of the elements make it impossible to walk in the footwear, which are created to be more like sculptures than shoes.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Pain footwear

"The collection aims to entrap and restrict the wearer's movements, slowing down the pace of our daily lives, and thus our experience of time," said Plantos.

One shoe is aptly named Pain, as its stiletto heel is made from an length of rebar that pokes into the wearer's heel.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Fossil footwear

The rebar is connected by a section of wood to the cylindrical concrete platform, with is imprinted with the shape of a foot. Another piece of steel forms a toe separator for grip.

Another, called Fossil, is also cast with the shape of the foot on the top of its rectangular concrete base. Rebar is bent to form both a toe separator and a raised handle.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Statuesque footwear

The form of Statuesque follows a traditional high-heel insole, but it is balanced on top of a tall stack of concrete elements.

A strap across the toes is alluded to by a semi-circular steel section, but raised too high from the foot to aid support.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Statuesque footwear

Finally, the Urban shoe comprises a slab of concrete with indents for the toes and ball of the foot.

Meanwhile, the heel sits in a curved element raised above on a vertical rebar support.

Sculptural footwear by Sandra Plantos
Sandra Plantos' Urban footwear

"The objects may be seen as miniature structures, which create spaces for the feet to inhabit," said the designer.

Plantos is not the first to design footwear that is purposefully difficult to walk in. Leanie van der Vyver's back-to-front high heels force the wearer to walk in an unnatural way, while Paulina Lenoir's comically long shoes make users reconsider their daily routes and pace.

Video is by Deborah Sheedy.

  • Chris MacDonald

    Then they aren’t shoes. Shoes aid mobility. They are a cast/moulded floor.

    • Meme

      There is this sub-category of standing shoes.

  • Jack Twist

    How can she be sure these shoes prevent mobility when the model in the video doesn’t even try to walk?

  • Ian Nairn

    I think the comment section might be in need of a boorish pedant filter.

    • guisforyou

      Since you are so brilliant and obviously fortunate to receive such a powerful mind that is clearly more significant than ours, and sees things with such clarity, why is this useless post of any significance to humanity?

      • Calen Knauf

        Its significance to humanity? The thoughts that they provoke, the inspiration they provide for others to create from… you are under the impression that creativity should be reserved solely for creating objects and art that people can overtly learn from or be aided by?

        Art and design is not only for bozos that need the “point” of their existence spoon fed to them. There is far more value in objects and art that you need to consider.

  • pipo

    Nice sculptures, very architectural.

  • Joseph Strawbridge

    Is this another daft joke or what?

  • These are awesome!