United Nude: Shoes With A Blueprint

In 2003 a Dutch architect from an architects family and an English shoemaker from a shoemakers family decided to start a brand. Disillusioned with fashion and not wanting to be yet another shoe brand or architecture firm, a design company was born – set on releasing specific, iconic products and rejecting broad seasonal ranges. The products evolve in projects from international teams (United) in an open way with direct recognition (Nude).

Above left; Rem D. Koolhaas and right, Galahad Clark

The company has several fabulous styles of shoes now and continues to grow in both styles and staff. It was originally co-founded by Rem D. Koolhaas (Rem D. Koolhaas is the nephew of better known architect Rem Koolhaas and distinguishes himself from his uncle with the middle inital) and English shoemaker Galahad JD Clark, who is a seventh generation shoe maker from the Clarks family in Somerset. Galahad took over the running of Terra Plana, an eco friendly shoe company, in 2003.

The concept of the company was and still is to meld architectural design and unusual materials with product design, creating unusual but functional shoes. United Nude is part of a creative collective, functioning as a hub of interaction between architects, fashion designers, magazine editors and photographers.

Each single pair of shoes is a reinterpretation of an architectural object or represents an exploration of different materials and colours: the first shoe created by United Nude was called “Möbius” and it was inspired by the Barcelona chair created by Bauhaus director Mies Van Der Rohe for the International Exposition in 1929. The uniqueness of this special sandal stood in the fact that it was characterized by a single strip that formed the sole, heel, foot-bed and upper of the shoe.

Above: the Barcelona chair as the inspiration for the Mobius shoe

In the Ultra mobius, a single piece unites the sole, heel, footbed and upper, a revolutionary achievment in shoe construction and design.

The Mobius is also available in hi and mid heel heights as well as in other color leathers, below are a few examples.


Ray and Charles Eames' famous aluminum office chairs inspired the “Eamz” series, featuring pumps and sandals, even a tech sandal, that integrate the chair foot into the heel of the shoe, a feature that seems to suspend it in mid-air.


The “Stealth” is a dynamic platform shoe inspired by the straight lines and styling of the Stealth F117 Nighthawk fighter plane. It's available as a peep toe pump and as a sandal as well.

The Porn Toe and Porn Toe Buckle styles are made from molding the strongest plastics in the world so the floating foot bed can function and support all while appearing to defy gravity.

above: Porn toe in mirrored silver patent leather

Mono Jane
Molded from very lightweight EVA material, this shoe claims to be the world's lightest weight wedge and comes in tons of fun colors.

Mono also comes in a flat ballet slipper like version.

the Ultra Cosmo uses hand molded carbon fiber for the light weight construction, creating a high-technology piece of art with sex appeal.

The Cosmo Ultra has a heel height of 11 centimeters, and is limited to production of only a few hundred pairs.

Also new for Spring Summer 2009 are the No.2 and the Six strap styles.


The No.2 is made of a tech nylon heel and available in four bright patent leather colors or two striped elastic versions.

Six Strap
The Six Strap comes in four different elasticized variations, one in solid black and three striped variations.

To learn more, see prices or to purchase any of the above shoes shown, go here.

Be sure to see their other styles and other color variations at United Nude.

If shoes made with unusual and or eco-friendly materials interest you, be sure to check out

Melissa Shoes of Brazil here.

Don't miss this more recent post on United Nude's Spring and Summer releases:


Vinita said...

I found your blog very interesting. The Ultra Mobius sandals are pretty cool. I don't remember reading anything on the pricing, so how's it priced?

Bird* said...

wo wo wo

loves the Eamz. love the Stealth. love love the Cosmo.

Laura Sweet said...

The Ultra Mobius is priced at $485.00 USD. and ther styles start at approximately $185.00.

All the prices are on their site which you can visit via the link at the end of the post.

Anonymous said...

The shoes are rather cool, but I thought it outrageous to say they are Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona chair inspired. What a joke! I could make an elephant come to the sape of the shoes in 20 steps...
Plus, the Moo Jane are exactly like my old Melissa's shoes, made by a brazilian brand at least 4 years ago.

Laura Sweet said...

Perte de temps, Just for clarficiation, it's the designer of the shoes who said they were inspired by the Barcelona chair, not myself.

And you'll notice that at the end of the post is a link to a large article on Melissa Shoes from Brazil I wrote a year ago.


Anonymous said...

united nude is such a cool and amazing brand. this is really a thorough look at the entire selection of products.

thanks for sharing!

Miguel Angel S2 said...


Son realmente fantásticas!

Eso si es Diseño!

SARAHSPY said...

wow. hadnt seen this post until being linked from today's. i love when architects go on to design other things-- they always bring such a fresh & measured perspective.

starcraft 2 strategy guide said...

Wow lots of pictures, never seen that shoe design before.

C'mon people, it's only a dollar.