Dutch footwear brand United Nude has enlisted the talents of five architects and designers to create a collection of strikingly sculpted shoes made entirely on a 3D printer. The high-heel specialists collaborated with printing company 3D Systems to present their sartorial de- but at Milan’s Salone del Mobile design fair.


“The ‘Re-Inventing Shoes’ project is about exploring and pushing the boundaries of this rapidly developing technology by creating shoes with the largest amount of sculptural freedom. The production method used is the highest quality of 3D printing, says United Nude.


Each shoe was 3D-printed (with a ‘selective laser sinter- ing’ printer) over 24 hours using two materials: hard nylon for the soles, and a softer thermoplastic polyurethane for the upper body. “I wanted to create shoes that are not necessarily for every- day wearing but really are conversational pieces, almost like art,” said United Nude’s founder Rem D. Koolhaas.


Only 50limited edition pairs of each shoe will be available for the public. The price of each pair will be the production cost, plus $2,000. The 3D-printed high-heels were designed by a select group of the world’s leading architects and designers: architect Ben van Berkel (Holland), product designer Ross Lovegrove (UK), architect Fernando Romero (Mexico), product designer Michael Young (UK) and architect Zaha Hadid (Iraq).