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UGS

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Design

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Concept: Mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms, has been used to make composite materials for applications including packaging, construction bricks, and shoe soles (Holt et al., 2012; Boyer, 2014; Jiang, Walczyk, McIntyre, & Chan, 2016). Grown on agricultural byproducts, mycelium acts as a natural binder, digesting and bonding to the surface of damp substrates as it grows (Jiang et al., 2016). Since all of the raw materials are natural, the mycelium composite is fully biodegradable (Holt et al., 2012). The purpose of this research was to develop and evaluate mushroom mycelium composites that have a potential application for shoe soles. To offer a solution to problems of waste, pollution, human health concerns, and resource depletion, this research incorporated exclusively natural and non-toxic materials, and many of the inputs were locally sourced. As previous studies focused on conservative footwear for men (Nam & Lee, 2016, Cao et al., 2014). The design challenge was to develop feminine footwear based on our target market of a college-aged woman between 18 and 25. We chose the format of a strappy fashion sandal with a cork-like shoe sole.

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Jan 1st, 12:00 AM

Mycelium Afoot: Fashioning Sustainable Footwear

Concept: Mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms, has been used to make composite materials for applications including packaging, construction bricks, and shoe soles (Holt et al., 2012; Boyer, 2014; Jiang, Walczyk, McIntyre, & Chan, 2016). Grown on agricultural byproducts, mycelium acts as a natural binder, digesting and bonding to the surface of damp substrates as it grows (Jiang et al., 2016). Since all of the raw materials are natural, the mycelium composite is fully biodegradable (Holt et al., 2012). The purpose of this research was to develop and evaluate mushroom mycelium composites that have a potential application for shoe soles. To offer a solution to problems of waste, pollution, human health concerns, and resource depletion, this research incorporated exclusively natural and non-toxic materials, and many of the inputs were locally sourced. As previous studies focused on conservative footwear for men (Nam & Lee, 2016, Cao et al., 2014). The design challenge was to develop feminine footwear based on our target market of a college-aged woman between 18 and 25. We chose the format of a strappy fashion sandal with a cork-like shoe sole.

 

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