I used to wear sandals – made out of eland (Daba) skins (N|Osi) – a lot, to run behind eland, kudu as well as warthogs. For hunting a special type of sandals was used. The sole was not flat but concave to give a better grip while running. (Kunta|Bo, one of the Ju|Hoan San living in Nyae Nyae conservancy in Namibia)

people section


Future Footwear studies and respects design related aspects of indigenous footwear – in particular, materials and the making process. Future Footwear focuses on indigenous footwear that is manually made, and does not have arch support or heel pads.

Toehold artisans

Kolhapuri artisans, Toehold India (www.toeholdindia.com)
In India, the small-scale footwear industry employs the traditional cobbler caste, the Chamar. Most artisans work in family-based establishments, passing skill and knowledge from one generation to the next.

Dastkar artisans


Juttee artisans, Dastkar India (www.dastkar.com)
For the making of juttee footwear we refer to the short film
‘A reindeer between buffalo’

Saami artisans

Saami artisans, Sogsakk Finland (www.sogsakk.fi)
In winter, the Saami of northern Scandinavia use nuvttohat, a fur boot made from reindeer skin. When reindeer are slaughtered for consumption, their legs are used for footwear, each animal yielding a single pair of boots.



JuI’hoansi artisans, Nyae Nyae Conservancy, Namibia
The Ju|’hoansi make their hunting sandals from eland skin, the largest antelope in Southern Africa. Only a few San still know how to make the eland skin sandals, and they share their ancient shoemaking knowledge with us to re-vive the craft.