Product Introspection: Replaceable Outsole Sneaker

17.07.11

Dissertations

FOLEY GY-FOLK *FW09
Left : Before outsole replacement, Right : After outsole replacement

More than any other fashion item, footwear requires a high level of practicality. When someone wears a pair of shoes that doesn't suit their feet even to the slightest, they can easily notice that they aren't a comfortable fit.

I have always been attracted to utility wear, so starting my brand by making shoes was always a natural path for me. Until now, I have always focused on comfort and durability when making shoes, and a lot of them have been made using the Goodyear welt construction method. One of the main characteristics of this method is that the shoes can be worn longer by simply replacing the outsoles.

Being able to wear the same pair of shoes for a long period of time is just as attractive as finding a comfortable pair of shoes that fit your feet well.

On one hand, lightness is a desirable feature found in sneakers where normally the upper and bottom components of the shoes are bonded together with an adhesive agent. This method however will always limit the lifespan of the shoe.

0117302002005 FOLEY-FOLK *SS17

I started thinking about whether I could manufacture sneakers using the Goodyear welt construction method. By using a cup sole normally used to make tennis shoes (a rubber outsole that has a tall "sidewall" which cradles the upper part of the shoe like a cup), but with a hand-sewn finish led to the creation of the FOLEY-FOLK style.

By minimizing the amount of adhesive and using cork for the insole, the shoes became breathable, which prevented them from getting damp. Also, the more they were worn the cork settled into the shape of ones foot, providing excellent comfort.

0115202002004 FOLEY-FOLK (KNGR) *FW15

It's been several years since the first model was released, and many customers who have purchased them have replaced their soles and continue to take great care of their shoes, which is something that makes me very happy.

0315202002002 FOLEY W-FOLK (KNGR) *FW15

FOLEY-FOLK CORDVAN *SS10

0115202002005 FOLEY-FOLK *FW15

FOLEY-FOLK *SS11

0113102002003 FOLEY-FOLK *SS13

FOLEY-FOLK *SS09

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