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Footwear Design

Caldera student, Sade, joined aspiring designers from all over the world in the Pensole footwear design camp. Pensole is headed by D’Wayne Edwards, Footwear Design Director for Nike’s Brand Jordan (pictured with Sade).

Sade’s project is to design a boot that derives from the Wellington boots of South African miners, who worked in horrendous conditions during apartheid in South Africa.  They were not allowed to communicate with each other verbally, so they developed a way of communicating by making their chains clink and slapping the sides of their boots.  This evolved, after apartheid ended, into a dance that the community did on the streets and at celebrations, in wellington boots.  Her boot is designed to be acoustically excellent for this dance, as well as be lighter, closer fitting, breathable, offering better balance (all to make the movement of dance easier), and also to be made in the colours of Oprah Winfrey’s girls’ school uniforms (green).  She envisions Oprah helping to get the boots produced and distributed…

She did this as part of a two-week design workshop that D’Wayne Edwards taught at U of O White Stag building, at which there were diverse designers from age 14 to 55 from all over the country and a few from abroad.  A great aspect of the project is that all these designers will now be friends and can develop their own network…

U of O course description:  This studio is open to students with previous design experience but little or no  footwear design experience. Due to the intensive nature of this course, this exciting  footwear design program is open to students through instructor approval only.  Students selected to participate in this two-week summer fellowship attend class for  four hours each day, then are expected to commit four hours to out-of-class work.  During this program, students experience what it is like to have a summer internship at a major footwear corporation and acquire the skills necessary to jump-start their  footwear design careers.


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