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South Africa | Manufacturing| Showing growthPhoto by Messe Düsseldorf
September 2015

New sandal and

water shoe trends

Sandals and water shoes offer a variety of colours, technologies and designs that will suit any customer’s taste, reports RHIANAH RHODE

Suppliers are offering sandals and water shoes for summer that will appeal to both the fashion conscious as well as the consumer who is more concerned about the technology than the aesthetics of the shoe. The casual and technical sandals for men and women come in a variety of styles, colours, in bright and dark shades, that will ensure that there is something for everyone.

Brands have made use of leather, canvas and even recyclable materials in their sandals.

Suppliers are looking after the environment by creating materials that are themselves recyclable, as well as by using recycled materials to manufacture the footwear – thereby doing their part to clean up waste. Your environmentally-conscious customers will want to know about these new sandal ranges.

Bronx men

The Bronx men’s summer sandals range is rugged and good looking, says Gordon Gassert from the brand’s local distributor, Jordan & Co. It features masculine colours that include different variants of black and brown.

This sandal range includes designs that have a full leather bandage wrap across the top of the foot with a padded suede leather foot-bed or leather and canvas combos that have a worn in look for the customer who wants a more casual look.

The range offers various options and either way the wearer will look and feel great in any of them, says Gassert.

The Hawai bandage sandal goes well with shorts, jeans or even a pair of chinos. “Slide a pair on after a day at the beach on the way to a casual beach front restaurant,” he says.

Their Savannah is a cross-over style with a leather and canvas combination and soft padded foot-bed. “It is stylish and will have your customer covered for his day on the yacht,” says Gassert.

The Blaze sandal has an aggressive bandage in a burnished leather and canvas combination. It boasts a lightweight PU sole and upper detail that will turn heads, he says.

The Rade is a finely tuned combination of fashion and aggression that is set on an EVA/ leather foot-bed and offers the wearer both comfort and style. The distressed leather and frayed edges of its canvas sets it apart from the usual beach sandal. “This is an easy-on-easy-off everyday sandal with rugged good looks and a bad attitude,” he adds.


The Grendha sandals, which are manufactured in Brazil, are in touch with a relaxed lifestyle and still has the stylish edge with which it has become synonymous, says Philip Fouché of local distributor Intershu Distributors.

“The 2015 summer collection features classic summer footwear silhouettes with a stylish twist that will glisten by a pool during the day, and shimmer throughout the night.”


Ipanema, locally distributed by Intershu Distributors, features a range of bright thong sandal styles made from fully recyclable plastic material.

The vibrant flip flop sandal collection, Ipanema, is named after the exotic and famous Brazilian beach in Rio de Janeiro. It is a global icon that is recognised for its fun, chic and colourful Brazilian spirit, says Fouché. The brand is “the perfect blend of a relaxed seaside lifestyle with the sophistication of city glamour”.

The Ipanema sandals stay in touch with current fashion trends and are sold in nearly 100 countries globally. They have a fast-growing presence in the closets and on the feet of Hollywood’s elite celebrities such as Angelina Jolie, Halle Berry, Kate Hudson, Ashton Kutcher and so many others, says Fouché.

They combine fashion with features such as multiple sole shapes for better comfort and fit, 360 degree prints that wrap around the sole, and “amazing strap and overlay details that make them unique. People notice the styles when they’re on feet!”

The brand’s styles are creative and comfortable, and are kind to the environment by using soft and durable Flexpand 100% recyclable plastic materials. The entire collection is made using at least 30% recycled materials while 99% of all its factory waste is either recycled or reused.

The thong designs in the range include a variety of bright orange, yellow, mint, turquoise, etc. as well as bolder navy, black, grey, etc. hues.


The Jeep sandal collection for men and women boasts a variety of styles for everyone from the outdoor enthusiast to the fashion forward consumer, says Dianri Luttig from local distributor Footwear Trading.

Due to popular demand, the brand has extended its men’s outdoor range, consisting of trail and adventure categories.

Their durable outdoor sandals have non-slip outsoles and cushioned midsoles. They also feature full grain leather uppers, which guarantee durability on harsh terrain and make them able to withstand the African landscape, she says.

Jeep’s men’s fashion range — also divided into two main categories: mules and thongs — features designs with durable full grain leather uppers and distressed canvas trims that highlight the heritage and craftsmanship of the brand.

These styles are constructed with utmost comfort in mind and can be worn with a favourite casual outfit. “Jeep shoes are staple items for any man looking for comfortable and durable summer footwear,” she says.

The men’s range offers a variety of colours including chocolate, tan, brown, etc. Some of the outdoor sandals feature velcro and drawstring closure systems.

The ladies’ range features a small number of outdoor styles as well as fashion thongs, which are constructed of high quality, durable materials with versatility and functionality as priority, says Luttig.

The ranges’ colour ways (blue, turquoise, grey, yellow, etc.) are fun yet versatile, and the feminine silhouettes make the footwear easy to pair with outdoor and leisure wear. The ladies’ thongs feature detailed straps such as braided straps and the outdoor sandals feature velcro criss-cross straps and drawstring closure systems.


Levi’s range of classic and timeless flip flops and sandals for men and women are ideal for the long and sunny summer days that are approaching, says Dianri Luttig from local distributor Footwear Trading.

These shoes offer durable comfort that can be paired with casual swimwear, denim shorts, summer dresses and everything else in between, she says.

The men’s range of EVA rubber flip flops is beach and surf inspired, but includes modern updates such as the distressed denim trims that feature on the Macphail.

Another update is embossing. The Bells’ sole mimics embossed wood, which gives it an authentic Levi’s appeal, and the Bowmore offers a sporty look with a deep embossed foot bed.

The versatile ladies’ Mimosa and Bellini flip flops both feature comfortable EVA rubber soles and are available in striking metallic colour ways such as blue, bronze, charcoal and purple. “The metallic colours on both styles have a vintage finish for that “lived in” charm,” says Luttig. “Mimosa is a woven t-strap style that adds Grecian flair to any outfit and Bellini is a classic thong that will enhance a casual summer outfit.”

Olympic International

Olympic International, locally distributed by Jordan & Co., offers a range of polyurethane (PU) and Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sandals for the younger and older male customer.

The men’s Aero and Flip sandals both feature blue, black and white colour combinations. The Aero outdoor sandal features a polyurethane upper and thermoplastic rubber (TPR) outsole, whereas the Flip has a PVC bandage strap upper and outsole. Both are available in sizes 6-11.

The black and grey kid’s Eagle outdoor sandal has a PU and mesh upper and TPR outsole. It is available in sizes 9-1 and 2-5.

Reef Brazil

The surf and lifestyle sandal brand Reef Brazil continues to build off the momentum of the Reef Swellular technology platform and has expanded its Rover Collection, says Brenton Jessop of local distributor, Because I can clothing.

The collection will include a fashion version of Swellular technology, which combines fashion and function for the global traveller. Swellular technology is built around three layers of material: a soft and contoured foam deck for instant comfort, a medium-density midsole for long-lasting support, and a high-density rubber outsole that provides traction, protection and durability.

The Rover LE is a men’s sandal that combines water friendly vegan leathers and a simplistic upper to bring an entirely new classic look to Reef’s most innovative sandal yet. Its triple density construction provides the same comfort, support, and traction that the Reef Rover sandal provides, with timeless leather appeal, says Jessop.

The Rover Hi is a women’s sandal that combines function and fashion with a slide construction complimented by a wrap around the ankle that is made of stretchy elastic goring for extra comfort.

The Rover HI LX version features soft Napa Leather wrapped around Swellular foam for comfort. The triple density construction provides comfort, support and traction and lends itself to be the most versatile sandal Reef has ever created, says Jessop. Its styling has a more global feel with a lot of attention to detail. “The fusion of fashion and technology continues to excite us because it delivers such versatile products,” he adds.

Reef’s Fanning sandal is an ever popular standout in terms of innovative comfort and functionality features suited for the most discerning customer, says Jessop. The brand prides itself on a ridiculously comfortable mentality, and that is exactly the premise behind the Fanning sandal, he says. This sandal features a water friendly synthetic nubuck upper and a contoured compression moulded EVA foot bed with built-in anatomical arch support that contributes to the overall comfort.

It also has a full 360 degree heel airbag enclosed in soft polyurethane, a grippy outsole that makes it ideal for use on wet slippery surfaces and a church key bottle opener that comes in handy on most occasions, says Jessop.


Rider sandals, which are also made in Brazil and locally distributed by Intershu Distributors, are driven by a culture that celebrates an active outdoor lifestyle and the spirit of freedom and self-expression.

The flip flop and slide designs in this range represent an attitude that reflects a more laidback way of life, says Fouché. They are also made to conform to the wearer’s foot to cushion every step and accommodate natural gait.

Born from Brazilians’ passion for life, these shoes are inspired by extreme sports, fashion trends and the great outdoors. They look as good as they feel and are built to last by eco-friendly manufacturing plants using 15-30% recycled materials, says Fouché. “Rider recycles 960 tons of material on a monthly basis reducing environmental impact by 11 500 tons per year.”


Rocky's Marvel, locally distributed by Crown Footwear, is a durable and comfortable sandal with a leather upper, EVA moulded footbed and rubber toe cap to protect the wearer's toes. The taupe sandal also features an adjustable quick-fastening lace system and neoprene lining.

Water shoes on offer

Water shoes are the ideal footwear for the outdoor enthusiast who will be fishing, hiking or doing any activity where his feet may get wet. To cater for this consumer, suppliers have a wide selection of water shoes that will suit your customers’ needs this summer.

These water shoes offer a number of closure systems, colours that appeal to both men and women, and features such as breathability, drainage ports, rubber soles, etc. that are useful when taking part in water-related activities.


The AquaLine range of water shoes, locally available from De Wet Sports, offers excellent grip through the rubberised soles and breathability with mesh uppers.

The range is available in adult and kids’ styles.

The kiddies versions feature bright royal blue, yellow and neon pink colours. The adult models also have neon offerings, but offer neutral colour variants such as grey and royal blue as well.

The range offers numerous closure options that include adjustable toggles (Hydro Tech), elastic laces (Hydro Cross) and Velcro straps (Hydro Glow).


Hi-Tec’s Wolf River ladies’ and men’s water shoes feature high performance uppers, which make them supportive, durable and breathable.

They have a toggle fastening system that allows for easy fastening, as well as drainage ports that allow for optimum performance in and around water, says Joanne Esterhuizen. “On the rocks or in the boat these are great shoes at an affordable price for the everyday water junkie!”


Merrell’s AllOut Sieve is designed for hydro hiking and offers the wearer traction in and out of water. Merrell is locally distributed by Medicus Shoes.

The midsole uses Unify technology, which connects the wearer to the trail and protects him from the terrain.

A durable Vibram outsole with a water channelling design also helps keep the wearer upright on wet surfaces.

Its neoprene lining allows it to dry quickly and an adjustable bungee cord lock-lacing system transitions in and out of water with ease.

Rock Spring

The Rock Spring range of footwear is ideal for activities such as fishing. Designed for outdoor durability and leisurely style, Rock Spring’s non-slip sole offers comfort and style for men and women looking for function and fashion.

The Rock Spring range of washable and breathable footwear is locally distributed by Intershu Distributors. These shoes are made mostly with an elastic upper that breathes and ensures a comfortable fit on the foot, says Fouché.

The styles range from regular lace-up to an easy slip-on in a multitude of colours — combinations of khaki for men and metallic colours, as well as brighter pink, yellow and purple combinations for women — and sole designs.

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