NEW- Footwear Design/Development blog launch

Hello, fellow footwear designers, and aspiring creatives,

I’ve been a huge fan of core since back in the early days (1998?!), and have always been thankful for the great knowledge base.

Now I feel I have something to give back.

I’ve been in the footwear industry for about 4 years and am now Footwear Product Manager for hummel International based in Denmark, responsible for all design and development of performance (mostly soccer, handball) and lifestyle footwear.

I’ve just launched a new personal blog, first pullover to cover the design and development process, since I’ve seen a lot of interest around lately (including the new footwear forum here at core).

first pullover

I’ll be covering everything in the design process including footwear industry terminology, design and pattern development, development trips in asia, production methods and materials, and some general trendforecasting things as I travel around (NYC, London, Hong Kong, Japan, etc.). Also showing some sneak peaks of new products and concepts.


If anyone has any comments or topics to suggest I cover, lemme know. I new to the blogging thing, but I live footwear and thought I would do something useful with my interest. I’ll try to keep at least several new posts going up everyday, but please be patient I do have a real 9-5 (more like 8-6, actually) too!

Cheers,

Richard

thanks and welcome. i was surfing through your links and I didn’t realize first pullover was yours. That is site is a great reference.

thanks for the love on the site, first pullover.

i just started it (yesterday!), but am already getting lots of great feedback. i felt the need to set it up, as I’ve always found tons of sneaker collector sites (i dont wanna see another dunk!) but nothing with a little more depth and less hype.

like me, i understand you are in the industry, and like me im sure you’ve had lots of people always asking questions on how shoes are made, the design process, etc. i thought i’d put something together online instead of always repeating myself.

also, thanks to you, this footwear forum has introduced lot of designers to shoe design. i think thats great. I studied (and practied) ID before i switched to shoes, and i’d never go back…maybe i can convert some people!

if you can think of anything good to feature on my site, or would ever like to contribute, drop me a line anytime.

R

Wow, Thanks a lot for taking the time to do this! I’ll make sure to check it regularly

Thank you

-T

very cool will be checking that out on the regular…thanks

anyone have suggestions on what they’d like to see? i dont really have too much of a plan for the blog, except to shed some light on the design and development process.

im planning working up a case study later this week from design brief to product to get things started…

if anyone has ideas, lemme know!

R

great job richard! I will definitley come back daily for updates…BTW LOVED the dfinitions of Exclusie colorway and LE!!! So True!

Lookin good Rich,
geez I’m away for a week and look how much I miss. :confused:

another bookmark to check daily. :wink:

Dan.

Dan,

glad you like the blog and thanks for all the good comments i’ve recieved here and by email. i’ve hit almost 6000 hits in my first week.

due to popular request i’ll be sure to keep the content up daily, and also will be posting a new series soon on upcoming designs and colorways giving people the chance to vote on the most popular to go into production.

i might also be posting up an illustrator file or pdf for download that all you fellow designers can work on to submit new designs/colorways.

check it soon and check it often. if you have any suggestions, im always ahppy to hear them!

cheers,

R

UPDATE-

First Pullover is back!

Since I’ve moved back to Canada in March and set up my own design consultancy, I’ve been overwhelmed with work and have unfortunately neglected keeping my footwear design and develoment blog, First Pullover updated. Thanks to all of the great support and contributors here at Core77 (The best footwear design forum on the net, IMHO), I’ve received countless emails asking me for the tutorials or other content that was previously available on the site.

Seeing as in my job as a consultant, I may not be able to post regularly to keep up a daily blog type format, but recognizing the need for a comprehensive footwear design/development blog, I’d decided to re-format First Pullover as a more resource-based site. The redesign is still in progress, and I’m open to any comments/suggestions you may have. I consider the core77 members my prime target audience, so would love to hear from you!

New to the site-

  • Overall appearance redesign. cleaner, easier to read through posts and navigate. Still 100% original content, ad free.

Custom google in-site search. Find the articles/content you need.

Labels. Like del.icio.us tags, posts are categorized to make it easier to find relevant posts and topics. I’ve gone through all 180 posts and labeled 90% of them so far and will complete the rest asap.

Archived posts listed by month.

Most requested/popular posts are for the moment moved to the front page for easy access.

Still to be implemented will be a new front page with key topic categories (ie. Design, Development/Production, Trend/Travel, Tutorial/Exercises, Resources) with top posts thumbnailed and listed for quick access. In addition, I’m working on creating some new content and resources such as technical drawing tips, an enhanced glossary and part name guide, production references and costing info.

Any suggestions would be warmly welcomed. Thanks again for the all the support here at core.

First Pullover
http://www.firstpullover.com

R

really, no suggestions?

im looking for any ideas here about features, navigation, etc. that would be useful. hit me up, this resource is for you!

R

Rkuchinsky I really don’t have any suggestions but your site really helped me write my 10 page paper on the shoe design process. But if you really want some advice maybe you could include how you do your tech drawings? I know people use Illustrator for it but an in-depth explanation on how they are created and how detailed do they need to be for factory to build the shoe? I would like to know because I don’t like doing anything technical and I would like to see is really that bad or hard to do? I would also like to know how you decide on what “last” shape last you use? It would also cool to know how much time each part of the process is usually given? How much time is given for sketching? How long does it take for a shoe to be produced once all the materials reach the factory? I can’t really think of nothing else.

Thanks Rich! The site looks great and I know I will be checking it out a lot. Your hard work to do this will be highyl appreciated by many!!!

-TH

Sup Richard-

site has always been a ref. point tell students or peers about.

some first reactions to the update:

1
the header on the site, too large I think. it makes it so that I have to scroll down to read anything, instead maybe having more news, events, posts etc seen when first enter an not having to scroll to see anything be great.

2
maybe a way to have TAGS or key words so could be a way to search through the site, find things that are commonly searched or tagged. (is kind of like what you have with labels)

3
possibly a tools section:
print
email
share

4
ratings- people could rate an when you search things come up more that had higher ratings.

5
links section

6
questions section? maybe where questions could be asked? maybe this lends itself too to much forum like debate.

7
interviews? could be helpful and a way to showcase various different types of projects.

just suggestions- keep on doing your thang

be well

Mm

Great site R.

Couple of useability comments. The pages don’t scale properly for me - I’m using a p.c. laptop with newest version of IE. Make sure you try viewing it on different browsers and both pc and mac.

As a result I found it hard to find the home button. Personally I’d prefer the left hand menu to remain the same on every page, as you work your way thru the site, these sections disappear so you can’t flick easily between them.

Wel done tho for updating your site. We build websites as part of our business and we STILL haven’t updated mine. :blush: You might just have embarrassed me into doing something!
Edited to add:

Agree with comments from MM:

Links are very important when optimising your site for search engines. You should seriously consider adding a links page.
FAQ’s I added these when I constantly got the same questions asked over and over again and it was starting to get time consuming answering them. My FAQs page has grown considerably since I first launched the site.

Thanks a lot for the comments. some really good suggestions.

  1. Technical drawings “how to”. Actually was planning to do one of these. Hopefully will be able to put it together over the holidays.

  2. Schedule/timeline. another good suggestion I was also planning on doing as its something i find most people dont really have an idea of. Of course every brand/designer works a bit different, but i’ll see what i can do to lay out a typical design/development calendar and production schedule.

  3. header size- i guess it depends what resolution your screen is at how big it looks. I’ll try to check it out on a lower rez screen or on a different computer and maybe consider scaling it down.

  4. tags and labels are the same thing. there are labels below each post and also all the labels listed on the right to enable searching. this should work to find similar posts with labels.

  5. by tools, do you mean being able to bookmark/print/email a post? not sure if i can do this with the blog format, but ill see what i can do. i think emailing a post might be possible if i find the right javascript. also may be able to get an RSS feed for the site and an “add to delicious bookmarks” thing going.

  6. ratings- i dont think i can do this with the blog format, unfortunately.

  7. questions- good idea. you can always leave questions in a post’s comments, maybe will also make an open post that people can add questions to in the form of comments to keep questions all in one place.

  8. interviews- another good idea. have some idea for this already in progress…

  9. FAQ- excellent idea. will work on this ASAP.

  10. browser compatibility. indeed this is important. i do try to work on the cross platform thing as much as possible, but am kinda limited as dont have a PC at home, and the blogger format is a little wonky on some machines/browsers.

  11. i know what you mean about the left menu changing in post view vs.the main page. this is blog format thing, im trying hard to hack to be easier to use, but am kinda limited. also been trying to find a “next page/previous post” link script to have on the bottom of each page, but doenst seem possible with the CSS format of the blog code.

  12. links. good idea. have lots of links in my delicious bookmarks i may just hotlink to, or build another post with links. just want to avoid becoming a giant link farm as i hate those kinda sites.

thanks again for the comments. I’ll work on everything as soon as possible, between real jobs, and hope to really build up the usefulness of the site in the near future!

cheers,

R

Nice new look and feel.
Keep it coming brother, and thanks for sharing.

I feel like i owe you and Yo a tuition check. thanks for the education.

im happy to help out. thanks everyone for all the support!

R

…just remember me, when one day im calling you for work :slight_smile: theres lots of mad skills here on the boards, and its great to see all the development and help contribute.

make checks payable to…

Just playing, what comes around goes around. Happy to help and happy you find it useful.

Richard, the new look is clean, I like it. The site is a massive resource! You are doing a tremendous service for the industry. Everyone appreciates the tremendous amount of thought, time and energy you put into First Pullover. In closing, I’d say your the man.