Parson’s School of Fashion finalists visit Shoe Polytechnic in Italy

This year we were happy to have 5 out of 8 students join us on the trip to Riviera del Brenta, Italy. They are Carolina Grullon, Emmanuel Nunez, Janet Yeung, Leonid Batekhin and Jon Max Goh. The senior students that couldn’t make the trip, (Elizabeth Bastian, An Dao and Lea Germano) joined us at the Shoe Polytechnic via Skype! Check this space in May to see the finished shoes of this year’s class.

At the Shoe Polytechnic Lea Germano, Skyping in to work with Federico Boscolo on her prototype.Parsons School of Fashion and The Shoe Polytechnic connect students through creative concept and technical expertise through this unique, exclusive and cherished opportunity with support of world-renowned shoe genius and IRIS founder Giuseppe Baiardo. This partnership celebrates rich collaboration between participants from both schools and produces highly innovative outcomes.

Each year, several School of Fashion students visit Riviera del Brenta, Italy, to see the Shoe Polytechnic and review the local shoemaking practices. This sixth annual collaboration between The Shoe Polytechnic and Parsons School of Fashion provides Thesis level students (Undergraduate/ BFA Fashion Design Seniors) the opportunity to design and prototype footwear as a pivotal component of Thesis work.
Beginning with concept based submissions, eight Fashion Design Thesis candidates have been selected to see designs come to fruition through collaboration with students of The Shoe Polytechnic with oversight from Giuseppe Baiardo, President of Acrib, (Associazione Calzaturieri della Riviera del Brenta) Cristiana Marcato Baldan, Product Development (OLG) President of the Shoe Polytechnic M. Tescaro and School of Fashion assistant professor, Francesca Sammaritano.
Each selected Parsons designer will work closely with a Shoe Polytechnic technical designer to create two (2) styles in 3 material variations for a total of 6 pairs per designer working closely with The Shoe Polytechnic to perfect all aesthetic functional elements, and technical elements.

During this January trip, the students are invited to visit the school and spend time learning and understanding the technical part of making the shoes they designed. They will tour the factories, and learn the chain of assembly that a shoe goes through before it is made. Some of the factories specialize in the heel, some in the soles, while others combine all the elements to finish the shoe. Equipped with the latest technology and state of the art machines, the Shoe Polytechnic offers our fashion students the opportunity to learn hands on the making of a shoe directly from the students and instructors. They are in addition given the opportunity to tour one of the biggest shoe design industries in the Veneto region: Onward Luxury Group (IRIS).

Rialto Bridge, Venice.Suolificio Brenta Suole – Sole FactoryTacchificio del Brenta – Heel Factory Stay tuned to the blog to read firsthand accounts of the students’ experiences!