While a devastating war broke out across Europe in 1939, a celebrated local shoemaker named Jan Antonin Bata quietly opened a small shoe factory in the rural Slovakian village of Partizánske. Bata quickly gained a local reputation for his beloved canvas trainers, labelled “The King of Shoes” by locals for creating new designs using only eco-friendly materials of the highest quality. As his fame spread, Bata’s expertise was requested by shoemakers across Europe and his factory began supplying top European designers and shoemakers with his materials, a tradition that continues until this day. All the while, Bata passionately continued working away on new models in his rural factory until his death in 1965.
In 1992, the legacy of Bata’s work became Novesta. Today one of Slovakia’s proudest and coolest exports, Novesta continues to manufacture all its low-top and high-top canvas sneakers exclusively by hand in Slovakia, using the 100% environmentally friendly materials developed by Bata during Novesta’s early days that are without chemicals and toxic glues. Already the go-to tennis shoe brand in Slovakia, Novesta is rapidly expanding its borders, stealing the hearts of Europeans and Americans with its timeless, minimalist aesthetic. Here at AllSole, we love Novesta for its old school European sensibility and ecological approach to production; this is a brand that is able to create unique, original designs in eco-friendly, sustainable fabrics that ensure this is a brand that is here for the long run.
Images courtesy of Novesta