How To Become A Women’s Footwear Designer

Women's Footwear Designers build innovative sneaker designs that advance the product aesthetic and performance for the women's consumer markets.

Career Profile, Salary, & Job Outlook —

What does a Women’s Footwear Designer do?

Women’s Footwear Designers build innovative sneaker designs that advance the product aesthetic and performance for women’s consumer markets. They follow the execution of all product details including construction, form, color, materials, style, fit, and performance. Usually working with a team, Women’s Footwear Designers develop sneaker designs with regard to cost/value requirements, manufacturability, sustainability, merchandising, and aesthetic finish. In addition, as women’s sneakers become part of regular assortment planning, many companies are looking for footwear designers who can cater to the women’s consumer bucket.


How much does this type of footwear designer make?

According to Glassdoor, Footwear Designers make a national average of $74,414 annually or $35.78 an hour in 2021. Entry-level footwear designers make around $46,000 annually, with senior-level footwear designers making $112,000 a year.


What impact does this career have towards the sneaker industry?

In general, there has been an increase in women taking on leadership and director roles within sneaker companies. Therefore, there’s a progression in possibilities for women’s sneakers are projected from the progression made for women’s sneakers and extended sizing.


What is the job outlook for a Women’s Footwear Designer?

By 2022, there is a projected volume growth of 4.0% in the footwear market. Moreover, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job growth in the fashion design industry (including Women’s Footwear Designers) is projected to grow one percent during the 2018-2028 decade (

How to kick-off your career:

  • Learn about the sneaker production process.
  • Create a moodboard of your favorite womens sneakers.
  • Research sneaker designers that you admire.
  • Download the Ultimate Sneaker Career Guide to plan your career path.
  • Explore the Sneaker Essentials online course to begin your sneaker design journey.

Learn from:
Gregg Woodcock
Sneaker Essentials contributor, FIT Faculty

Designer Credits: Mossimo, FILA, FUBU, Phat Farm, Diane von Furstenberg, and Diddy’s footwear operation




Related Careers:

Men’s Footwear Designer | Kid’s Footwear Designer | Footwear Graphic Designer | Materials Designer | Design Engineer | Sneaker Customizer | Color Designer | Creative Director, Footwear | Athletic Footwear Designer | CAD Engineer, Footwear | Pattern Master

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