Unless you live somewhere with a perfect 85-degree temperature year-round, every change in the season requires a rotation of shoes. The weather warms up, and out go the canvas sneakers, in come the strappy sandals. An autumn chill brings rain that turns into sleet, and in come the rain boots and salt-crusted snow gear.
For her thesis project at the Design Academy Eindhoven in the Netherlands, designer Noesha Hu created a wood and plastic sole that can weather all seasons. The result: a year-round shoe with interchangeable straps and coverings that can be the perfect July beach sandal one day, and the perfect fall sneaker the next day. Spring pastels can be interchanged for dark autumn hues, and the shoe can be dressed up with slightly fancier accoutrements to hit up the party scene.
Granted, some people love having a million different shoes in their closet, and Hu’s invention would require plenty of effort on the part of the wearer, who would have to strip her shoe down to the sole and use bright metal screws to attach a new leather upper structure whenever the weather changes. But, as Hu observes, “These shoes are perfect for practical women who like utility wear.” And for anyone who really, really hates shoe-shopping.