Luxury lifestyle sneaker brand The Cryptide, under the creative leadership of designer Stephen Henrich, has clinched the prestigious title of 2023 Footwear Brand of the Year at the Global Footwear Awards (GFA). In this year’s edition, the GFA spotlighted technology and sustainability, applauding The Cryptide’s on-demand manufacturing strategy and its standout product, the ‘Cryptide One’ shoe (pictured below), entirely 3D printed from a single flexible material, emphasizing recyclability.
The ‘Cryptide One’ showcases innovation through its unique design features. The upper part, resembling a perforated sock, ensures optimal ventilation and can be customized based on a 3D scan of the wearer’s foot. The segmented sole design addresses specific areas like the toe, ball, and heel, while the midsole incorporates a branching structure tailored to the wearer’s weight using FEA and topology optimization.
“I’m thrilled to see so many of this year’s GFA winners embracing sustainability and technology in their designs, offering us a glimpse into the future of eco-friendly footwear,” said Astrid Hebert, GFA programme director.
“It’s inspiring to witness the perfect blend of style and innovation.These designers aren’t just making shoes; they’re crafting a narrative of mindful steps towards a more sustainable and tech-driven future.”
The Cryptide wasn’t the only 3D printed shoe honored at the event. The Emerging Footwear Designer of the Year award went to Madeline Helt from the Savannah College of Art and Design, celebrated for her reimagined climbing boots integrating technology for heat retention. The design, a collaboration with Jack Winkler (for 3D printing) and Emily Lacomba (for sock design), emphasizes customizability and sustainability, allowing users to swap or change the sole after wear.
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