You Don’t Mess With An Original: 30 Years of Teva

The cover of our 1991 catalog.

It’s been 30 years since a young Grand Canyon river guide changed the footwear game forever by inventing the very first sport sandal: a nylon ankle strap attached to a sturdy flip flop which he started selling from the back of his van. It was an amphibious shoe that held up just as well on slippery riverbeds as it did trekking through new cities (or running through an airport). That shoe design? It was the very first product to come from Teva—and we’re proud to say we’ve stayed true to the Original.


For Spring 2014, as we celebrate our 30th anniversary, we’re reintroducing the Original Sandal with the same webbing sport sandal design, revamped with nostalgic prints and classic colors, while also debuting new performance sandals and shoes that hold up to whatever you put them through: obstacle races, white-water rafting, iced coffee runs or even long days at Bonnaroo. It’s a nod to the past with a look to the future—the best stories come from both. So as we get ready to tell our next one, here’s a look at the heritage of a true Original:


The cover of our 1991 catalog.

Teva founder Mark Thatcher, a Grand Canyon river guide who invented the first sport sandal in 1984.

Responding to feedback that Thatcher’s original sandal wasn’t ideal for other sports than rafting, Teva created and patented the Universal Strapping System in 1988—and that is how an icon is born.

It’s 1997, and we begin a brief foray into the nudist market. Our tagline? “Wear Less, Do More.” Sales are slow…

Outdoor lovers have been sharing their hard-earned “Teva Tans” with us since the beginning. #tevatans

Thatcher testing out a prototype.

Proof the Teva Original really is built for anything you can dream up next.

Shop the Spring 2014 Collection now at and find us on Instagram @Teva #tevaoriginals