Heaven on high heels

Silvia Fado makes hydraulic art for the feet

Young, Spanish shoe designer Silvia Fado was one of the prominent speakers at Design School Kolding’s recent international shoe conference. Her particular passion for footwear has resulted in a collection where high fashion and comfort go hand in hand with the modern woman who is confident with herself and with her style. Silvia Fado has designed a hydraulic heel that cushions impact when walking and makes the wearer feel more comfortable. She has a strong interest in architecture and a background in knitting. Still, she chose shoes as her career.

Design School Kolding asked Silvia Fado what made her become a shoe designer and what inspires her.

Why the interest in shoes?
I have loved shoes my whole life. Ever since I started my fashion studies, I have been drawn to shoes and I knew that one day I would become a shoe designer.

What made you come up with the idea to make hydraulic heels for shoes?
I love functional and intelligent design. I am inspired by architecture and product design and wanted to develop functional footwear. I analysed movement and the need for heels and this made me think of making hydraulic heels.

Is your background in knitting visible in your designs?
Not directly. I studied architecture before I studies fashion, so I would say that I am more influenced by architecture. Do you have a favourite material? It is hard to pick just one. I love to challenge different materials and technologies. My methods depend on the materials I choose. If I had to make a pick, I would say that I love working with wood and leather; moth materials are delicate, noble and versatile.

How do you think of your collection ”Kinetic Traces” – do you consider them to be pieces of art or are they utility objects?
My Master project ”Kinetic Traces” is a concept that I developed based on that very starting point. They are sculptural objects that present an idea which I later developed in a more commercial direction; K4U

What types of women wear your shoes?
Women who are looking for something different. Who are confident and in search of new experiences. They want to be trendsetters.

What inspires you at the moment?
A lot of things inspire me. It is often the things that surround me at different points in my life. Often it is designs from other disciplines, random products or mechanisms. I like to explore how things are made or how they work.

Which shoe designer inspired you the most?
I canot name just one. I follow the collections of Iris Van Herpen, United Nude and Zaha Hadids. They are the most innovative and adventurous. Yet, I also watch fashion shows with several of my favourite designers: Alexander Wang, Marni or Jil Sanders, to name a few.

Other prominent speakers at the shoe conference:
Massimo Bruto Randone, Academic Coordinator & Innovation System Advisor at Vibram
Paolo Coletto, R&D Manager at Vibram
Michelle Swenson, Sales and Marketing Rep at San Fang Chemical Industry
Suzette Henry, Material Director at Pensole
Michael Lennheden, Footwear Designer at Filling Pieces
Dacie Doucette, Sales and Marketing Manager at Ariaprene
D'Wayne Edwards, Founder of Pensole Henrik Vibskov, Artist and Fashion Designer