Spreading the ‘Digital Cobbler’ Concept 0

21 April 2015 - // Opinions

Innovative start-ups from around the world are recycling and reusing waste to make new products. There are more brands than ever before putting sustainability back into the market. We take a look at 3D printed shoes that are assembled on demand and eliminate the ovens, adhesives and massive labor requirements typical of the industry: Lyf Shoes

Lyf Shoes are a new way of making footwear that enables custom fashion and fit construction, all while being friendly to the earth. They use a process called the ‘Digital Cobbler’, which is an innovative system of localized manufacturing that combines micro-scale production with retail shops. These shops can be launched anywhere, from the heart of a high-tech urban scene to a rural village in a developing country.

Using the latest digital technologies like additive manufacturing and on-demand textile printing, each component of the shoe can be customized for fashion and fit. New fashion prints can be added every day by designers around the world. Each component can change in an endless number of ways to enhance fit requirements and fashion tendencies.

Since they only make what they sell, Lyf Shoes eliminates the huge amount of waste typical of the industry. The construction of the shoe is uniquely free of the toxic adhesives used in footwear. Lyf Shoes are also designed for complete disassembly, so each pair of shoes can stay out of the landfill and be re-cycled into a new pair. With detailed wear tracking built in, they can then offer the customer a better fitting pair, closing the loop with the customer and the planet.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not (necessarily) reflect REVOLVE's editorial stance.

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