Established in Denmark in 1904, Bundgaard is Scandinavia’s oldest children’s shoe manufacturer and a proud household brand in the north.
The story begins in Esbjerg, a teeming industrial city in the 20th century.
1904 – By chance, Thorvald Emil Bundgaard becomes the owner of a shoe factory in financial difficulties. In the beginning of this adventure, Bundgaard manufactures shoes for many different purposes, such as shoes for gymnastics.
In the 1920’s Thorvald’s first grandchild is born. He decides to dedicate his production to making children’s shoes only. Pioneering in the art of making healthy and comfortable shoes for children, Thorvald and his son Kuno produce some of the best children’s shoes on the market.
1939 - World War II takes its toll on Bundgaard shoes. Sourcing materials is hard, and Thorvald needs to think out of the box. Experimentation with fishleathers and bicycle tires prove the only way to supply the factory with sufficient amounts of raw materials, facilitating continued production of shoes for the average Danish family.
Thorvald dies in 1942.
His sons, Kuno and Emil, take charge of the factory and decide to specialize their children’s shoe collection even further. The sub-categories prewalkers, first shoes, and kids’shoes are born.
1950-60’s – Bundgaard is the go-to brand for the large Danish middle class.
1959 – The rest of the Danish shoe industry suffers as new import regulations opens the country to foreign shoe brands, while Bundgaard shoes experience smooth sailing.
Prior to the introduction of this regulation, Bundgaard attracted innovative and specialized workers - the sum of their energy focused on differentiating their shoes from anything imported. Better materials and a higher degree of comfort are key components in their success.
1965 – The Bundgaard bunny mascot is introduced to the brand.
1970’s – Another generation of Bundgaard sons take over. This time, Thorvalds grandson Jes Bundgaard, with whom the interest in children’s shoes was born, takes charge of the Bundgaard vision.
During the 70’s, Bundgaard’s best-selling style is the legendary “duck shaped shoe” - made from thick heavy leather and a crepe rubber sole. Another successful feature is the water-repellent leather with which Bundgaard winter boots are produced.
2009 - Until now Bundgaard has been a family-owned enterprise. The financial crisis has gotten the better of Bundgaard and the company is sold. It barely survives and is sold again in 2012. Now Bonvita Footwear Company takes charge, deciding to take care of this historical brand with respect for its heritage and identity.
Bundgaard shoes are made for children in motion; children bicycling, running, climbing, skipping and jumping. Children who laugh and cry, break boundaries and
become familiar with their senses.