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Shoe Designer Katrien Herdewyn Creates Beautiful 3D Printed Footwear

Katrien Herdewyn
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Fashion and science come together in a beautiful fusion thanks to Katrien Herdewyn, a shoe designer with a background in engineering, material sciences, and nanotechnology.

Katrien Herdewyn is a Belgian designer who uses both traditional craftsmanship skills and 3D printing to create beautiful shoes.

She explains in the video below how she became interested in shoes at the age of just four. However, her education took a slightly different path. She graduated as a civil engineer with a Master’s degree in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in 2010 from the University of Leuven.

She never gave up her interest in footwear. As well as a Ph.D. in Sciences, she also studied Footwear Design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Sint-Niklaas. 

Two years ago, Herdewyn decided to start her own commercial shoe label Elegnano. The label has since been featured at many exhibitions, fairs, and fashion shows. Herdewyn explains she has never regretted it: “For me, this is really my dream. It is rewarding to see the whole process from design to selecting the materials to seeing the first finished shoes.”

Make Your Own Shoes like Katrien Herdewyn’s

Herdewyn created the label to have an outlet for her two greatest interests. She is mixing Italian craftsmanship with 3D printing technology.

“With my background in engineering, I try and combine new technologies with traditional craftsmanship. I believe this is where the future lies. 3D printing offers so many possibilities; you can do anything you can imagine,” Herdewyn explains. “I want to design shoes that are high-tech and high-fashion at the same time.”


Over the years Katrien has not only designed but also acquired quite a few pairs of shoes herself. This isn’t surprising considering the fact that she doesn’t have to buy her own pairs anymore. She now owns an impressive 150 pairs.

However, free shoes come with a cost. Her life is busier than ever: “Now my job is very versatile: one day I design shoes, I visit my factory in Italy, we produce prototypes, we follow up the production and of course sales and marketing, etc. And of course, I also need to create a new collection every half year.”

Fancy printing your own shoes but have no 3D modeling experience? You can now contact freelance 3D modelers at i.materialise who can help you out with your vision.

Source: i.materialise