Foot's Nest by Noriyuki Misawa

The 2nd Annual Global Footwear Awards Winners Announced

February 6, 2022

The Global Footwear Awards 2021 Best Overall Winners Announced

The Global Footwear Design Awards (GFA) is announcing winners for its second edition, showcasing a variety of exceptional creative potential across 20+ categories in all levels; Brands, Independent and Students. The GFA recognizes visionary design talent from around the world with an ambition to provide the highest recognition to footwear designers in all categories including sustainability and social impact.

For the first time, The Global Footwear Awards is partnering with Sneakers By Women and Shoe Girls Studio to launch special awards specifically for female footwear designers with a mission to provide greater exposures for aspiring female footwear design professionals as well as emerging designers.

“One of Sneakers By Women’s main goals is to educate and inspire the next generation of females entering the sneaker industry. To recognise and congratulate those women through GFA, as well as providing the tools they need to thrive through access to a roster of sneaker industry.” Julia Lebosse, Founder of Sneakers By Women

The GFA jury panel consists of leading industry professionals coming from different disciplines within the footwear industry, including publications, retailers, institutions and the footwear guru in the industry, providing an overall industry perspective towards the selection of the best designs. Here are some of our jury’s words:

“The GlobalFootwearAwards is a great competition for both, young and aspiring designers to showcase their concepts and also for established brands to let their work compete against each other.” Timon Kuhlenkamp, On Running Footwear Designer.

“Apart from enjoying the variety in creativity I was most happy to see that more and more designers start to think of footwear as an area to tackle socio-political issues and so plays a part in taking the discipline beyond only reproducing styles of fashion, and playing with technology, and engaging with real-life issues.” Eelko Moorer, LCF MA footwear course leader.

Here are the 2021 GFA ‘Design of the Year’: 


Abdul Lawal, United Kingdom – London Southbank University
Emerging Designer of the Year

The Julee Boot

Tori Soudan, United States
Independent Designer of the Year


Kui Cai, China – Peak Sports Usa Design Center, Inc
Brand of the Year

Here are the 2021 GFA ‘Best Overall Designs: 


Ruben Asuo
Best Overall – Sustainability


Lise De Smet
Best Overall – Women’s Fashion


Parthasarathee Behura – Politecnico Di Milano
Best Overall – Sports Performance


Dempsey Pauwels – Academy of Fine Arts Sint-Niklaas (SASK)
Best Overall – Men’s Fashion


Smart Slipper

Yanzhe Wang / Menghao Yuan, China – University of Nottingham
Best Overall – Special Awards in Medical and Social Impact


Weijian Wu – Minjiang Normal School
Best Overall – Kids

Kira Goodey: Genderless Heels

Kira Goodey – Brand
Best Overall – Unisex Fashion


Foot’s Nest

Noriyuki Misawa – Misawa Shoe Design
Best Overall – Special Awards in Artistic Footwear


Kui Cai, China – Peak Sports Usa Design Center, Inc
Best Overall – Fashion Sneakers


Abdul Lawal, United Kingdom – London Southbank University
Best Overall – Special Awards in Innovation and 3D Printing


View through the rest of the GFA 2021 winners 

Congratulations to all winners on their outstanding works!

“It’s been such an exciting journey seeing all the work this year. The level of creativity conjointly with innovation and sustainability made us realised why we do what we do. I hope that our platform encourages many more aspiring designers, professionals and brands to continue pushing boundaries of design as we provide space and exposure for their creative visions to ignite.” Siramol On-Sri, GFA Managing Director. 

To learn more about GFA’s award structure and winner benefits, and more, click here. For any press enquiries, email support@globalfootwearawards.