From the slopes to the streets, the shoes we make are not only tools for experience but a symbol of the lifestyle we live. Outfit changes are for celebrities and sometimes living an active lifestyle doesn’t leave much time to kick off the pair of shoes you commuted in on. Your thoughts echo ours in wanting footwear that isn’t just functional but also looks great too.
This year, we’ve not only expanded our water-related line but have introduced seven new bike-inspired fits for the most hardcore free riders and casual pedal pushers. From top performing high tops and new colorways to an expanded size range, our new bike collection has something for everyone. We chatted with Teva designer, Lavion Gibson to get the dirt between the rubber.
The design team seems to be making a big push in the direction of functional shoes that look good both on and off the street. Is it a brand goal to lead that conversation?
Yes, we definitely make it our initiative to consider the potential lifestyle crossover a shoe can have, we work to identify lifestyle influences from fashion, to the social scene surrounded around a person to make sure our shoes lend flexibility to grasping life as it comes at you.
We have to assume that collaborating with Jeff Lenosky went beyond scrawling down notes on a bar napkin. Can you walk us through a session you had with Jeff and how you worked from design to execution?
When we began collaborating with Jeff, we started things off by having a gnarly free ride showcase from Jeff in the back parking lot of our headquarters. After an exciting show, we took things a little more grassroots and grabbed some pizza and beer and sat around in a group and talked everything bike and the things that he is influenced by in life. He gave us profound insight from a first hand view of what he has experienced with different shoes throughout the years, good and bad.
We also had Jeff describe to us some things he wears and why, so that we could make sure the shoes linked up well with the whole free ride steez. From there, we did a lot of back and forth on design details, materials, etc. Jeff rode every test sample for us and helped us fine tune every performance attribute to the highest level.
Testing the technology in the mountain bike shoes has to be a pretty involved process. Can you take us through what goes into that?
Building performance product means extensive testing and product evaluation. At Teva we have a history of developing amazing product; we set out to make the best shoes on the market. Our process is pretty in depth from start to finish. We start by evaluating every facet of a shoe, from the initial shape, design, color, materials, wear testing and so on. We typically go through three rounds of revisions during the product development phase, making adjustments along the way to get everything right. If we aren’t satisfied with where we are after three rounds, then we continue making additional adjustments until we are absolutely sure that the product is ready to rip and ride in.
With so many styles to choose from in the new Bike Collection I’m sure it’s hard to pick a personal favorite. What’s yours and why?
Hmmm…tough call. I love the whole collection! I think we have worked hard putting together a wonderful line that I think people will come to enjoy. I would have to say my personal favorite right now would be the Crank/Crank Mid. I love the fresh look of the upper that allows you to wear them pretty much anytime and anywhere. That paired with the Pedalink out sole that takes a uncompromising approach to performance makes the Crank a sweet shoe for pretty much everything life and the mountain has to offer.
The new Teva Bike Collection is in-stores and available for purchase on-line at our website.