Four Lives in Leather

Four Lives in Leather

Zuzana Šidlíková

Many decades have passed from the time that Baťa began in Czechoslovakia his groundbreaking industrialized production thus putting small artisans out of business. And today, once again begs the question: what position, do custom made shoes or handmade handbags created in local workshops in small amounts, have in today’s market. Four brands within the Czech Republic and Slovakia have their own stories to share.

Zuzana Serbak – graduated from the Prague Academy of Arts, practiced in London and Amsterdam, and her shoes are found in many national and international exhibitions. She currently lives in Topoľníky and she has her own studio/workshop in Dunajská Streda. Under her own brand name, she mainly focuses on making small collections of custom made boots and shoes.

Eliška Kuchtová – is a student at the Design Studio of Clothing and Shoes at the Prague Academy of Arts. She became the winner of the National Award for Student Design 2012. During that same year, she received two nominations from Czech Grand Design Awards in the categories of Discovery of the Year and Fashion Designer of the Year. She has under her belt an internship at the Dutch studio JorisLaarmanLab. Since 2012, Kuchtová has been working for the Spanish brand Camper. In 2011, she launched the project Cutulum, which characterizes unconventional design, flexible processing of footwear with in various elements of shoes for health, stress, and diabetics.

PlayBag – behind this brand stands Aleš Loch. He studied bag-making at the Garment School in Prostějov and also graduated from the Private higher vocational school of Art in Zlín in the field of free and commercial graphics. He created his brand in 2009. In its collections one can finds bags as well as purses and belts. They are sold through a website and in several local stores found in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Austria.

WooleWo – the brand WooleWo was founded in 2011. Behind the brand stands a married couple, Zuzana and Mojmír Minárik. Their workshop is located in Oščadnica, where they dedicate themselves to creating from wool, leather, and wood. Their motivations is to create timeless, simple, and functional products.