This ‘Tsonga’ Vellie in Sand Suede is our modernised version of the original South African ‘Veldskoen’. Made from a 100% South African Cow Suede, combined with a multi colour, floral design, cotton weave, upholstery fabric and sand suede trim finish. The interior of the shoes are fully lined with leather and fitted with fibreboard inner-soles, covered in latex foam and wrapped with leather for your comfort. Our fibreboard inner-soles are much more breathable and durable, lasting up to 10 years which helps prevent soles from splitting in half. Fitted with 100% genuine eco rubber soles for quality and good grip, which are hand-stitched into the bottom of the shoes. All our soles can be replaced and recycled when needed. All NAVA Apparel shoes are handmade by local South African craftsman and women. Without their skills, our quality products wouldn’t exist.
‘Tsonga’ is a Southern African tribe and language, which is more notable in countries such as South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Tsonga tribes are mainly found in the Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng provinces. Most of southern Mozambique is inhabited by Tsonga people, variously named as Copi, Rhonga, Ndzawu, Tonga, Shangana, and Tshwa. The Tsonga grouping is sometimes known as Tswa-Ronga. “Double-barrel” names have caused more problems and confusion in the past, instead of fostering union. This brought about the name Vatsonga-Machangana or Tsonga/Shangaan. The Gaza-Ngoni-Ndwandwe went to what is now South Africa after 1897, where as the Tsonga group went there from 1820. The Gaza-Ngoni-Ndwandwe later tried to claim to be Tsonga kings in South Africa, when in fact, they had never ruled the Tsonga in what later became South Africa. For this reason, the name Tsonga should be preferred over Tswa-Ronga.
Veldskoene (“FELT-skoona”) or colloquially vellies (“FELL-ys”) are Southern African walking shoes made from vegetable-tanned leather or soft rawhide uppers attached to a leather footbed and rubber sole without tacks or nails. The name comes from Afrikaans vel (“skin”), later assimilated with veld (“field”), and skoene (“shoes”). They were first made in the 17th century by the first Dutch settlers in South Africa. Their design is believed to be based on the traditional Khoisan footwear observed by these settlers. The footwear was later embedded into the Afrikaaner psyche when velskoene were used as the footwear of the Great Trek.