Established in 2009, The Footsoldiers have humbly grown to become one of the largest independent Footwear Design Consultancies in the World. Having built a robust in-house design team comprised of variously skilled individuals, The Footsoldiers handle outdoor, lifestyle and performance design, and cover all genders and ages. Capable of handling large corporate business as well as small independent start-ups, The Footsoldiers have designed for luxury Fashion houses (Alexander McQueen / Hussein Chalyan) as well as designing products for some of the World’s top athletes (Maria Sharapova / Djokovic).

Design

01 - New Balance
 
02 - Puma
 
03 - Helly Hansen
 
04 - Ugg
 
05 - Who
 
06 - Clarks
 
07 - Boxfresh
 
08 - Canterbury
 
10 - Slydes
 
11 - Head
 
12 - PF Flyers
 
13 - Asics
 
14 - Belstaff
 
15 - Havaianas
 
16 - Fila
 
17 - Jack Wolfskin
 

Media

New Balance
 
Slydes
 
PF Flyers
 
Fila
 
Tom Astrella
Co-founder
Tom Astrella
Co-founder
Place of Birth Born in London, England.
Background Studied Product Design at Middlesex University, graduating in 2003.

Began an internship at Puma before moving onto a full time position in 2004, designing footwear across a number of ranges: 96 Hours, Black Label, McQueen and Mainline.

Role Co-founded The Footsoldiers in 2009, with Hector Rubio.
Interests Futurism, documentaries, buying things I don’t need.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Mag.
Hector Rubio
Co-founder
Hector Rubio
Co-founder
Place of Birth Born in Fuenmayor, Spain.
Background Studied Product Design and Development, specialising in footwear, at Cordwainer’s College at The London College of Fashion.

Completed work placements in Spain and China, gaining first hand experience of manufacturing processes.

Worked for French Connection, Ben Sherman, Te Casan and Puma.

Role Co-founded The Footsoldiers in 2009, with Tom Astrella.
Interests Family, travel, music, football.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Max 90, New Balance 1300.
Alejandra Paredes
Operations Manager
Alejandra Paredes
Operations Manager
Place of Birth Born in Cali, Colombia
Background Studied Fashion Design Foundation course and after a Fashion Business BA at Istituto Marangoni London.

Joined We are Talent as part time Events and Hospitality Manager. Afterwards Joined Sé Interior Design as a Logistics and Operations Assistant.

Role Accounting and Operations Manager, with The Footsoldiers since 2018.
Interests Food, Travel, Cooking, Gymnastics
Favourite Shoe Nike Free Flyknit 3.0, Valentino Rockstud leather sandals
Harry Brickwood
Design Manager
Harry Brickwood
Design Manager
Place of Birth Born in Berkshire, England.
Background Studied Graphic Design in Bath. Ultimately decided to follow his passion and in 2003 began working in the footwear industry for Dr Marten’s.

After a brief stint at license company GBMI, Harry joined Puma in 2008, working for the Blackstation Design team in London.

Whilst there he met Tom and Hector and together they collaborated on numerous fashion and lifestyle footwear projects.

Role Design Manager, with The Footsoldiers since 2012.
Interests Art, film, travel, music.
Favourite Shoe Vans Old Skool, Jordan XI, Jordan Future.
Ben Quartly
3D Manager
Ben Quartly
3D Manager
Place of Birth Born in Taunton, England
Background Studied Product Design at Somerset College of Arts and Technology.

Ben joined a cycle shop working as advertising manager before moving to Clarks International where he stayed for 21 years working in product development.

Role 3D Manager, with The Footsoldiers since 2019.
Interests Film, art, photography.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Mag, Clarks Desert Boot.
Libby Arnold
Sr. Footwear Designer
Libby Arnold
Sr. Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in London, England.
Background Studied Footwear design at Cordwainer’s College at the London College of Fashion.

Joined luxury shoe brand Jimmy Choo as a design intern and followed this up with another design internship with avant-garde footwear brand FINSK.

Joined The Footsoldiers for a third internship in 2011 before moving to a junior role at G-Star Raw. Returned to The Footsoldiers as a full-time member in 2013.

Role Senior Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2011.
Interests Fashion, travel, keeping fit.
Favourite Shoe Manolo Blahnik 'Hangisi' Jewelled Pump, Valentino Rockstud Heels, Reebok Classic.
Rob Haddock
Sr. Footwear Designer
Rob Haddock
Sr. Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Lancashire, England.
Background Moved to London from Blackpool to study Footwear Design at Cordwainer’s College at the London College of Fashion.

Completed degree in 2012, after spending a year on work placement with The Footsoldiers.

Joined The Footsoldiers and is the longest serving member after Tom and Hector.

Role Senior Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2011.
Interests Cycling, footwear.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Jordan 1 BRED, Adidas Predator (Original).
David Dooley
Sr. Footwear Designer
David Dooley
Sr. Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in North Yorkshire, England.
Background Studied Footwear Design at De Montfort University and Royal College of Art,
graduating in 2008.

Began an internship at Puma before moving on to work with other brands such as Ben Sherman,
and Le Coq Sportif, based in Paris.

Role Senior Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2021.
Interests Music, travel, basketball, Yorkshire Tea
Favourite Shoe Adidas KB8 (97’), Nike Air Moc.
Sandra Plantos
Footwear Designer
Sandra Plantos
Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Romania, raised in Dublin.
Background Graduated with a Masters in Architecture at University College Dublin, Ireland in 2013. Worked for various architectural practices in Dublin, Barcelona and London.

Proceeded to study a Masters in Fashion Footwear at the London College of Fashion in 2014.

Winner of The Cordwainers’ Dato Jimmy Choo Award 2015.

Upon graduation in 2016, Sandra worked briefly for Designer Mira Mikati, after which she joined The Footsoldiers as Design Intern.

Role Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers, since 2016.
Interests Culinary Connoisseur, Fitness Fanatic, Health Hippie, Fashion Fiend and Sun Seeker.
Favourite Shoe Stuart Weitzman Over-the-Knee boots / owns a small collection of very ‘lived-in’ Nike gym trainers.
George Hodson Walker
Footwear Designer
George Hodson Walker
Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Burton-upon-Trent, England
Background Studied Product Design at Coventry University of which involved a placement year at FILA UK as an accessories design intern.

Joined The Footsoldiers as a Design Intern in 2016.

Role Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2016.
Interests Football, golf, cricket... any sport.
Favourite Shoe Adidas Predator Mania (FG)
Heleen Overbeek
Footwear Designer
Heleen Overbeek
Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Blaricum, the Netherlands
Background Studied a BA Fashion Design at University of Arts Utrecht and completed cordwainers certifications at the Dutch Shoe Academy. Moved on to study a MA Footwear design at the London College of Fashion, graduated in 2018.

Completed an internship at OAT Shoes. Worked as a freelance designer for several years on various projects ranging from footwear design to 3D modelled prosthetics before joining The Footsoldiers.

Role Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2018
Interests Food, travel, sustainable fashion & design
Favourite Shoe Adidas x Parley Alphaedge 4D, United Nude Zaha Nova
Elisa Smaniotto
Footwear Designer
Elisa Smaniotto
Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Castelfranco Veneto, Italy.
Background Studied in a specialised school of arts in Italy and moved to the UK after graduation.

Proceeded to study BA (Hons) at UAL Cordwainers Footwear Design and Innovation. Soon after graduating, interned and worked at SWEAR London before joining The Footsoldiers.

Role Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2019.
Interests Drawing, tennis, listening to true crime podcasts and watching movies.
Favourite Shoe Chloé Nama Sneaker, Adidas Forum Low Jeremy Scott Dipped Pink
Brandon Haley
Jr. Footwear Designer
Brandon Haley
Jr. Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in West Yorkshire, England.
Background Studied Footwear Design at De Montfort University.

Started as an intern with The Footsoldiers in 2021 before becoming a permanent member of the team in 2022.

Role Junior Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2021.
Interests Football, running, bouldering.
Favourite Shoe Nike ISPA Road Warrior, Nike React Element 87.
Hamish Riley
Jr. Footwear Designer
Hamish Riley
Jr. Footwear Designer
Place of Birth Born in Somerset, England.
Background A tinkerer by nature. Studied BSc Sports Product Design at Brighton University.

Began as an intern at The Footsoldiers in 2021 before becoming full-time in 2022.

Role Junior Footwear Designer, with The Footsoldiers since 2021.
Interests Making clothes, sports, travelling.
Favourite Shoe Wallabees, Beckham era Predators.
Hollie Myrie
Colour Design / Product Developer
Hollie Myrie
Colour Design / Product Developer
Place of Birth Born in London, England.
Background Studied Drama, Media and Film at BCUC in Buckinghamshire.

Worked in various fashion/footwear roles including Men's Brand Buying at Kurt Geiger.

Role Colour Design / Product Developer, with The Footsoldiers since 2017.
Interests Music, Art, Fashion, True Crime Docs, Old Man Pubs, Tattoos.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Max 90 & AM1, Converse CT High Top.
Charlie Astrella
Visual Artist
Charlie Astrella
Visual Artist
Place of Birth Born in London, England.
Background Studied Computer Animation at Teesside University, specialising in character design and pre-production.

Worked for seven years as a retoucher, visualiser and CGI artist for various brands including Adidas, Nike, Electronic Arts, Virgin and KFC.

Role Visual Artist, with The Footsoldiers since 2016.
Interests Drawing, games, music, football.
Favourite Shoe Nike Air Max 90.

Contact

Emerging from an urban, gritty underbelly, Shoreditch has transformed into one of the trendiest and most vibrant artistic areas in the UK. With unexpected street art adorning nearly every surface and populated with destination retail stores and pop-ups, there is inspiration to be found in every corner. For this reason, in 2010, we made Shoreditch our base of operations. Should you need to contact us regarding a potential project or you have an inquiry regarding employment or internships, we would love to hear from you: please contact us using the details below. Visits to The Footsoldiers design studio are strictly by appointment only.