This Designer Says His 3D Printed Sandals Are ‘Game Changers’

Created with a Bambu Lab X1C and “expanded” TPU filament, Jack Prewitt plans to sell the sandals’ files, so users can create their own customized footwear.


Designer Jack Prewitt recently showcased his impressive 3D printed sandals on Reddit – and you might not have long to wait before wearing some of your own.

Printed in “expanded TPU” (Prewitt gives Colorfabb VarioShore TPU as an example) and clocking in at less than 120 g each, the sandals have lattice midsoles that can be tweaked to better support varying weights and pressure distributions. They’re also customizable, from the straps to the footbeds, to the size and color.

The sandals were “made using a combination of 3D scanning, computer-aided design, and printing using the Bambu X1C as a test bed,” Prewitt told All3DP. “This process is pretty inefficient, as it requires manual tuning of the CAD file. Instead, a new process is being worked on which allows for a custom shoe to be generated in seconds instead of hours.”

If successful, this would ostensibly allow Prewitt to provide users with a custom file for sandals designed specifically for their feet and allow them to print their own at home. He hopes to showcase a demo of this file generation process in the coming weeks.

To be viable, however, the file and materials must combine to be a fraction of the cost of both traditional and mass-produced 3D printed shoes that are currently available on the market.

“The goal is to make cheap 3D printed footwear accessible to as many people as possible,” Prewitt said. “I believe that we are starting to see a push towards low-cost, customizable footwear, and 3D printing will be important in helping to make this possible.”

So far, there’s been “a lot of trial and error” in essentially every step of the sandals’ production, from the design itself to fine-turning the print settings. But, once he nails this, Prewitt said he could expand into a more retail-focused approach to shoe sales.

“I may look at providing fully printed footwear as well, for customers without printers, but this method has traditionally been expensive and can have long wait times,” he said.

For more on Prewitt’s sandals, check out his Reddit post. There, you’ll find a few more juicy tidbits from Prewitt about the footwear – such as that they’re “very easy to clean” and have predecessors that are “unsuitable to ever see the light of day” – which makes it more than worth the read.

Share your thoughts