Woon’s Win for Footwear Design

Woon’s Win for Footwear Design

When Apparel Design Critic Anne Marika Chasse called senior Jenevieve Woon 17 ID to let her know about a shoe design competition sponsored by the Fashion Footwear Association of New York (FFANY), the Industrial Design major literally had one week to design a collection and submit sketches. “I designed a fall/winter collection of boots and flats—five designs in all—that featured a lot of textures and fringe,” she says.

“I chose Industrial Design because I love problem solving and making things with my hands."

Woon had recently completed Chasse’s introductory shoe design studio offered jointly through the Industrial Design and Apparel Design departments and was mildly obsessed with footwear.

After the big scramble to submit her designs, she learned in late April that her collection placed third in the nationwide competition. Apparel Design faculty member Kathleen Grevers, who facilitates student competitions in apparel and footwear design, notes that the accomplishment is especially impressive since RISD doesn’t have an official footwear department and Woon was competing against students majoring in shoe design at other institutions.

Woon’s win includes an intensive five-day shoemaking workshop in NYC organized by Milan-based footwear and leather goods design institute Arsutoria. While she’s thrilled, the graduating senior says she’s ultimately more focused on finding a job.

Now that she has caught the bug, would she have majored in shoe design if it were available here? “I love problem solving and making things with my hands, so it would have been a good option,” says Woon. “But I chose Industrial Design for the same reasons.”

Simone Solondz

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