To quote Henry Ford: “Quality means doing it right when no one is looking.”
At any one time, the Löwenweiss offices are full of slipper lasts, models and prototypes, which have been strewn across the tables or resigned to the shelves. Some of these are in development and others have already been abandoned as they do not fully encompass the brand’s philosophy. In addition to being continuous, the research activities carried out on the new footwear models allow us to combine two of our core values: tradition and innovation.
Where does the inspiration behind the new slipper models come from? As a general rule, from being attentive to our customers’ needs: if these are in line with the Löwenweiss philosophy, then a fashion designer will carry out some market research on our behalf. This enables us to identify the main trends in both the footwear sector and the interior design industry, thus creating a clearer picture of the ever-evolving “home life”.
Creating the design and last
Based on the research findings, we set about implementing the new slipper project, which involves: the design, accessories, sole height, materials and wedge decisions.
Once all the details have been defined, we search for a suitable last or create one ad hoc. This wooden or plastic foot-shaped form will then be used to create the footwear prototype.
Next, we share the design of the model in question with the sales network to receive preliminary feedback. If the idea is generally well received, we begin creating the cardboard sock - i.e. the slipper outline that will be taped to the last - whilst simultaneously ordering the materials that will be used to create the first model.
Creating the prototypes
Here we go! The prototype phase begins by testing this first women’s slipper prototype with the chosen materials on various types of feet. We concurrently ascertain that the production chain is able to produce the proposed model in a relatively seamless manner. After the initial tests, we then refine and tweak the design before moving on to create the second prototype (again for women); this time, we ask various employees to wear the model to check the fit and comfort levels.
From lasts to dies
We are now ready to create the models and lasts for men and children; this is then followed by tests on the various sizes. Once the final testing and subsequent tweaking phase has been completed, we create cardboard forms for all sizes and the relative production dies. After this meticulous design phase, which can take at least 6-7 months, we are now ready to produce the first series of the new slipper model!
A continuous improvement process
The feedback received from our customers after the first models are sold, often helps us to identify any defects regarding the fit or materials, thus leading us to make further improvements to the initial design. This continuous improvement process enables us to create footwear that can cocoon, support and protect all foot types, whilst also providing comfort and promoting the wearer’s well-being.