World Footwear

Innovation

Japanese designer creates the fondue slippers

Jun 11, 2014 Japan
Japanese designer creates the fondue slippers
The PVC shoes can mold to the feet like a second skin, using a process similar to dipping food in melted cheese
The name is taken from the cheese fondue, as the process to make the slippers is quite similar to the one used in this meal. Like the pieces of food that are dipped into melted cheese, the whole process starts with dipping the foot in liquid PVC. This makes an instant cast and as the material hardens a snug shoe takes shape.

According to its creator, Satsuki Ohata, the fondue slipper can be worn within the home by folding the heel down or if the heel it’s to remain unfolded it will make it more like a shoe. Vibrantly colored variations provide personal customization and, additionally, they can be drawn with markers and pens, creating a bespoke touch.

Ohata is now working on a self-dipping kit that would allow users to create their own shoes and is experimenting with different materials that are safer to use at home.

Designer websites already started to list the advantages of the fondue slippers. For them it is quite an innovating feature the fact that these can be worn outside as shoes or at home as a slippers, which adds to the waterproof characteristics and the ability to wash them after usage.

On the other side, questions about breathability arise, as perspiration would certainly be a problem. Also, the liquid PVC might get between the toes during the dipping process, making it hard to put the shoe on or take it off. Another point to bear in mind is the protection (or lack of it) of the feet, as the material is quite thin and the feet wouldn’t have the solid protection of a shoe made in leather or in a synthetic material.

Regardless of the evolution for this new product, now at prototype stage, this innovation confirms the tendency to look out for new materials that can be used and applied to footwear.

For more information about the fondue slippers project please visit the Satsuki Ohata 's website.

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