Apprentice shoes by Doshi Levien

London-based design practice Doshi Levien have collaborated with bespoke shoemakers John Lobb Ltd to create this range of shoes, entitled Apprentice.

The shoes are made by hand, as shown in this series of photos of the design and manufacture process.

Doshi Levien consists of English designer Jonathan Levien and indian designer Nipa Doshi.

Here's some text about the project from Doshi Levien.

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Apprentice project:

Based in the city of London, we are surrounded by small jewel like shops, ateliers, specialist makers and artisans who epitomise fine manufacturing. The trades vary from shoe making, to clothing, saddlery and gentlemen's umbrellas.

The trades people draw upon a reservoir of knowledge learnt through practice and experience and passed on through generations. When you visit one of these ateliers you witness an expertise that encompasses engineering, material technology and fine craftsmanship with an acute understanding of the human anatomy.

With the generous support of the Arts Council of England, we created a collection of shoes that demonstrate the creative possibilities resulting from the partnership between design and expert making. This is our aim as a studio, to work with the best makers in the world.

While spending time with bespoke shoemakers John Lobb ltd., we realised that our ideas needed to grow from an understanding of their processes. Learning about the shoe from a technical and material perspective shaped the design directions.

We decided that reinventing the shoe was out of the question and that it makes sense to utilise all the skills available at John Lobb and create shoes that emphasise their strengths. We wanted to create a range of shoes that can only be made by John Lobb, a collection that can only be made by hand.

The name of the project is ‘Apprentice’. However, unlike the conventional meaning of the word, this collaboration was an equal exchange of expertise.The name of the project is ‘Apprentice’. However, unlike the conventional meaning of the word, this collaboration was an equal exchange of expertise.