Creative footwear manufacturing 


We feel that THIS is the course that EVERYONE that deals with any kind of footwear development should take, because it will give the biggest advantages for any shoe company. It will help you bring your collection development back to the factory floor, so you understand how you can systematically apply new technologies to increase creativity, quality and sustainability, whilst drastically saving time and cost. 


Course content

In 5 intensive days we will cover all aspects of the footwear manufacturing process, from last and mould making to upper and sole construction and materials, including knitting. This is NOT a course you could just replace by watching some of the many footwear manufacturing videos on Youtube though; we actively help participants understand how they could manufacture BETTER. So we start the day with a theory class, then visit one or more factories and then we sit down with the group to evaluate how the process might be less wasteful, quicker and smarter.


After this training, you will be able to find solutions to design and manufacturing challenges that you could have never thought of behind your desk! We have had participants from all levels complete this course, from young designers to more senior product development staff and even experienced factory owners, because it is about learning a new way of "manufacturing thinking", regardless of previous experience. 


Concrete results

Whenever possible, we adjust course content to the needs of individual participants. In our previous edition we helped an experienced Chinese manufacturer to set up a more sustainable production line and knowledge center.  We assisted a well-known Dutch sports podiatrist to create her own line of custom sandals with orthotics and helped her understand how to better adjust sneakers to the needs of top athletes. 

We helped an entrepreneur from the USA start her own semi-custom high-heels line, using a very advanced last making system from one of our contacts in China. Furthermore, we advised a Thai entrepreneur how to manufacture his own line of soccer shoes, tailored specifically to the Thai market and climate. We even trained a senior designer for a big Dutch brand on new manufacturing methods, so she gained enough knowledge to train her production team in Indonesia.

Course Details


This class combines Footwearists founder Nicoline van Enter's creative thinking skills with David Hsieh's manufacturing knowledge and network. Classes are in English, David will provide translation from Chinese whenever needed.


Dates: June 6-11 2019, 08:00 - 17:30 each day except Sunday

The course takes place right after the Dongguan Footwear Innovation Summit, which is an ideal combination with this course. You can also visit the Guangzhou Shoe and Leather Fair the week before, one of the leading footwear machinery shows in China.


Location: Dongguan, China (various locations)

Level: all levels, participants must be working in the footwear industry or strive to do so

Price: €1750 (excluding 21% VAT, if applicable. Price is to be paid in advance, 50% downpayment is required upon registration)

Included in the course price: transportation to all class locations, course syllabus

Not included in the course price: transportation to and from China (we recommend you fly to Hong Kong), hotel accommodation, breakfast, lunch and dinner. We will suggest low-budget and business hotel and restaurant options.  

Visa: participants from outside China will need a business visa, we can provide you with a letter of invitation and Chinese company license.



Please fill out the form below to apply for this course. We will get back to you within 48 hours to let you know if your application has been accepted. There is a maximum of 12 participants for this course. For any questions please email us at