How to Incorporate Fur Into Custom Shoe Design

How to Incorporate Fur Into Custom Shoe Design

Summary: We asked a New York Times featured artist how she incorporates fur into her custom shoe designs.

TL;DR: Very carefully. 

This fur ain’t for the faint of heart!

“The shoes are representative of an animal being skinned for its fur. The colors are a blood rich ruby red and faux exotic rabbit fur” says

Amanda Yoakum @yoakustoms

Vlad Tepes shoes

We wanted to salute the work Amanda did, incorporating portraiture into her sneaker design process. We asked her about her inspiration, design process, and methods to include fur into the shoe design.  

Q: Where did you get the inspiration for the Galliano/Impaler shoe?

A: “The Impaler pieces are part of a series of work, ‘Icon.’ The series features a satirical theme for each icon depicted. Considering my background in fashion design, when I was selecting my icons to recreate, Galliano was of course one of the first that came to mind.”

Q: What made you decide to overlay the portrait of Galliano with Dracula?

Galliano Vlad Tepes Impaler shoes fur fire red ruby sexy dont you agree Google

John Galliano

-John Galliano, Gibraltar-born British fashion designer; executive at Vogue, Christina Dior, Givenchy 

Vlad the Impaler

-Vlad the Impaler, Romanian military general & inspiration for Dracula

Q: What made you decide to overlay the portrait of Galliano with Dracula?

A: “John Galliano has a whimsical and outrageous vibe but also a dark and destructive quality that ultimately cost him his job with Christian Dior. I figured what better way to playfully depict this than to overlap him with the brooding, nefarious character of Vlad the Impaler. This poetically worked, as Galliano bears a strong resemblance to Vlad.”

Glass case on display

Q: How did you incorporate fur into the shoe itself?

A: The shoes are representative of an animal being skinned for its fur. I added additional flaps of leather to mimic the skin being peeled back to reveal the flesh underneath. Finally, the fur was applied to the additional leather and on the tongue of the shoe.

Q: What was the process of working with the fur?

A:  I’ve worked with fur on various shoe designs now. The process requires patience. I try to predominately hand sew it, as using glue is a risky application because it could destroy the fur during the process. Also, I would always suggest painting what you can first, if not then the fur should be thoroughly covered prior to painting. Fur is a delicate surface that can be easily ruined with the simplest of slips or spills.

Q: You can buy custom kicks online. We’ve previously covered how big names like Nike, Adidas, Vans and New Balance offer hundreds of options. Even with those options on the table, why do you think consumers still commission artists like you to create one of a kind pieces?

A: Commissions aren’t for everybody. For instance a lot of artists and sneakerheads like to play around, so they like the sandbox of a NikeID or Vans Customs. There they can modify fabrics, textures, and patterns for just about every part of the shoe. Other buyers are more discerning. They really crave the ‘one of a kind.’ Exclusivity is a thing, and people want it.

Featured Artist: Thank you Amanda

Amanda Yoakum had her first solo exhibition at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey in 2010. Rich with bold colors, her work plays between realism and illustration and has won her a featured article in the New York Times.

Amanda Yoakum @yoakums

Amanda Yoakum @yoakustoms

#customshoes #customkicks #shoedesign #leathercaresupply

Chris Pratt We'll see you next time meme



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