28 years ago the world's first Soft Sole was made
Where it all began
Over 25 years ago, the world’s first Soft Sole came to be. It was handmade from leather offcuts, stitched together in a New Zealand garage by Bobux founder, Chris Bennett.
The makeshift baby shoes that would go on to be the foundation of Bobux had to be made that way because nothing like them existed at the time. In a world that was set on cladding babies’ delicate feet in heavy, rigid, ill-fitting footwear, Chris wanted something better for his baby daughter, Chloe - something that would let her developing feet wriggle and move like they’re supposed to while keeping her little toes cosy.
The original Soft Sole in production in the Bobux warehouse. New Zealand, c. 1991
The Soft Sole was a phenomenon that led Chloe’s parents, Chris and Colleen, to found Bobux. Since then, their invention has become a rite of passage for babies all over the world - because baby’s first shoes shouldn’t be shoes at all.
Bobux now designs a range of shoes that nurture kids’ feet from the moment they’re born until up to 8 years old.
But the Soft Sole is where it all began: Our heritage.
The Bobux Family
Now, 28 years since she wore the world’s first Soft Sole, Chloe is still here, working alongside the rest of the team at Bobux HQ in Auckland. Chloe’s daughter Harlow has been the star of many Bobux photoshoots with her cheeky smile and infectious giggle, and she’s been a real asset to our design team - testing shoes and never holding back how she feels about them.
Bobux founder Chris Bennett with daughters Hannah (left) and Chloe (right) wearing their Soft Sole shoes.
Our founders, Chris and Colleen continue to oversee the company, their collective experience in design and business invaluable to the Bobux family’s shared values, goals and mission.
For the whole team at Bobux, our strong family values give us a sense of pride and belonging, and we can only hope these values extend to our partners and customers. The second generation of Bobux babies is here and the Bobux family continues to grow!
The Original Soft Sole Today
Even after nearly thirty years of change, growth and innovation, the original Bobux Soft Sole has largely remained the same.
Today, a pair of Bobux Soft Soles is purchased somewhere in the world every sixty seconds. In hundreds of styles and in hundreds of retailers across the globe, the Soft Sole continues to comfort and nurture little feet.
The very first babies to wear them are now dressing their own children in Bobux Soft Soles, and the parents who first bought them for their children all those years ago still have their first pair as a keepsake.
After two generations and nearly three decades, Soft Soles are the Bobux heritage.
Shop the original. New Season Bobux Soft Sole Collection is available now.