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Shoemakers since 1842

In 1842 Pieter Wijdemans founded the first shoefactory. In 1883 the factory was taken over by his son Johannnes, he became pioneer in the use of steam-powered machinery in the production of footwear. 


In 1921 Caroline, the daughter of Johannes, adopted the business together with her husband Josephus van Gastel. The fourth generation of shoemakers presented itself in 1946. The five sons of Caroline and Josephus started production in their own factories in Kaatsheuvel. 

In 1987 Marcel and sjef van Gastel step into the company. They expand the company abroad, focusing on export. The brand Braqeez is introduced in 1988 and in 1990 the brand Bunnies was changed to the name Twins & Trackstyle. 

Sjef leaves Van Gastel Shoes in 2012 and Marcel stays as only director in the company. Furthermore the brand Bunnies was reintroduced in the same year under the name of its little brother BunniesJR. 

In 2015 Est. 1842 was founded as ladies footwear brand, focussing on young trendy women. Later Est. 1842 was formed to focus on the development and production of BIO sandals collections for Ladies and girls. 

In January 2019 Van Gastel Shoes leaves Kaatsheuvel and the company's Head Office was moved to Gilze.

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