These shoes weren’t just made for walking. Israeli designer Netha Goldberg is changing the meaning of functional fashion with shoe attachments for everyday items such as tampons, matches, and even charging ports.
Shoe Attachments for Functional Fashion
According to Goldberg, our society no longer experiences enough positive physical interactions with others. She decided that she could help bridge that gap by designing shoes with special shoe attachments for everyday items. The objects she chose are ones that not only do we use, but we often lend to others. (1)
“Our feet contain such benefits and also obtain the true characteristic of movement. Movement as in being dynamic and active, but also movement that symbolises the transfer and giving of an object to another,” she explains. “I started researching what people like to give and to receive while they are on the go and paid attention to the matter of weight and size.” (1)
From there, she designed shoes that had the capacity to carry three items (1):
- Charging ports
Though the designs are far from a “normal” looking shoe, they certainly are unique.
“The project examines the field of cooperating in an unconventional way and provides answers to the sincere desire to give and receive as part of a creative, mutual and open society.” (1)
Each design is completely unique from the other, however, they all have a sort of futuristic, abstract art feel to them. The body of each one is knitted, but the shoe attachments are all different. They were each chosen to have a response to items we request to borrow quite often.
The Red Shoes
“Do you have a tampon I can use?”
This is a question women are asked in nearly every public space imaginable, particularly in public washrooms.
The red shoes are the first set we see in the video. A young woman goes into a public bathroom and starts fishing around in her purse for a tampon. Relatable to every menstruating woman out there, she realizes that she doesn’t have one.
That’s when another woman in the washroom sticks her foot under the bathroom stall door, revealing a red shoe with tubular openings for various sizes of tampons. The woman is surprised at first, then accepts the offer happily.
The White Shoes
“Anyone have a light?”
In the park, outside (or inside, depending on where you live) of bars, at a concert, this question is asked all the time when someone wants to smoke but doesn’t have a lighter.
The white shoes are designed with spikes all over them that contain holes just the right size for matches. In the video, we see a man approach two women in a bar asking if either of them have something for him to like his cigarette.
One of the women then reaches down, pulls a match out of her shoe, lights it on the match pad on the toe of the shoe, and helps him light his cigarette.
The Blue Shoes
“Do you have something I can charge my phone with?”
The last shoes we see come with an attachment that is relatable for nearly everyone – men, women, smokers, and non-smokers: Charging ports.
In the video, we see a man pull his guitar out in a park and start playing. Slowly, more people begin to join him. Their jam session begins to attract onlookers, who pull out their phones to take a video.
Finally, a girl walks up to take a video, only to notice that her phone has a low battery. She sits down, pulls out a cable, and plugs her phone right into her shoe. The other two audience members notice this and ask to plug their phones in as well.
These blue shoes have a plug at the back so the battery can be recharged when they are not being worn.
A Social Shoe
Goldberg wanted the items to all to be visible to both have higher carrying capacity as well as to encourage social interaction. There is a barcode printed on the back of each shoe that links to a social app, allowing people to connect even further.
“In general, my point of view about our goal as designers is to give a thread tip that will motivate, educate and lead to action,” she explained. “It is not the only objective and role, but it is certainly an important one – one that led me to create the Netina project.” (1)
Though these shoes aren’t actually available for wearing, the concept is an interesting one and a reminder that we all desire to connect with one another more.