Clarks Originals - A brief history behind the styles we stock at Arena Menswear

Posted by Arena Menswear on

About Clarks Originals - Arena Menswear

 

The original heritage footwear brand. 

Here at Arena Menswear we have a great selection of Clarks Originals footwear, including the iconic Desert Boot, Wallabee & Weaver. We thought it might be nice to share a brief history about the styles we have to offer.

'Often imitated, never bettered'

Originally founded in 1852 by the brothers Cyrus & James Clark, the company is still conducting its business from its headquarters based in Somerset.

Probably best known for the iconic Desert Boot, there are also a plethora of styles available in the Clarks Originals Range.

 

What we have on offer:

Clarks Originals Desert Boot -

Originally released in 1950, the Desert Boot was designed by James Clark's great-grandson, Nathan Clark. Whilst serving in the Royal Army Service Corps in 1941, his brother Bancroft had requested him to gather information regarding any footwear that might be of use to their company whilst he traveled the world. It is believed that the inspiration behind the Desert Boot was was a result of the Eighth Army soldiers who had been transferred to the Far East from North Africa and had been wearing ankle high suede boots that had been manufactured in the bazaars of Cairo. These were sketched and patterns were sent back to Bancroft, however no progress was made until Nathan had returned to Somerset and cut the patterns himself.

The Desert boot shared the same last as the men's Guernsey Sandal and was sampled in a neutral split suede. The initial sample received a very negative response from the companies stock committee who had stated 'it will never sell'. After Nathan introduced the shoe to Esquires fashion editor Oskar Schoefler at the Chicago Shoe Fair in 1949 a editorial featuring the Desert Boot with colour photographs was published in Esquire Magazine in the early 1950's. After seeing the article in Esquire Magazine Bronson Davies requested to represent Clarks and sell them across the USA. Eventually popularity grew with in the UK & European markets with the Desert Boot being sold initially in the UK through shops in Regent Street, London. The Boot featured a Union Jack label, targeting tourists leading to a European sales growth in the 1960's.

Features include a premium quality suede, leather or textile upper with metal lace eyelets, flat laces and the Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive heeled crepe sole.Clarks Originals Desert Boot

Clarks Originals Desert London -

The Desert London is a low version (cut below the ankle) of the popular Desert Boot.

Features include a premium quality suede, leather or textile upper with with a small heel pull, metal lace eyelets, round laces and a Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive heeled crepe sole.Clarks Originals Desert London - Arena Menswear

 

Clarks Originals Desert Trek -

Lance Clark took inspiration for the Desert Trek after seeing the Dutch artist, Sonja Landweer wearing a Zwartjes version of the shoe. It was initially launched in 1971 in North America and later released in 1972 in the UK. The iconic 'Trek Man' that features on the heel of the shoe was sketched by Lance Clark and refined by advertising manager, Bob Patten.

Features include a premium quality suede, leather or textile upper with its instantly recognisable centre stitch seam and 'Trek Man' embossed leather heel insert. Metal lace eyelets, flat laces and a Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive crepe sole.Clarks Originals Desert Trek - Arena Menswear

 

Clarks Originals Wallabee

Originally released in 1967 the Wallabee was based on a moccasin called the Grashopper, which was manufactured by a German company Sioux. The Wallabee was originally produced at the Padmore and Barnes factory based in Kilkenny, Ireland until its closure due to management buy-out.

Very little has changed over the years and Clarks have kept the design close to its roots, with the Wallabee still being produced on its original last, distinctive crepe rubber sole and premium quality suedes & leathers.

Features include a premium quality suede, leather or textile upper with punched lace eyelets, flat laces and a Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive crepe sole.Clarks Originals Wallabee - Arena Menswear

Clarks Originals Weaver -

Another classic from the Archive, the Clarks Originals Weaver is built around the Wallabee last, featuring a moccasin construction from premium quality suede, leather or textile. Iconic whip stitch detailing to the upper, with punched lace eyelets, flat laces and a Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive crepe sole.Clarks Originals Weaver - Arena Menswear

 

Clarks Originals Ashton -

Taking its design cue from the classic Desert Trek, the Clarks Originals Ashton is crafted from premium quality suede, leather or textile, with a hand-stitched sachetto construction to aid comfort and flexibility. tonal metal lace eyelets, flat laces and a Clarks Originals branded lace tag all sit on a distinctive crepe sole.Clarks Originals Ashton - Arena Menswear

 

Shop our full range of Clarks Originals here, or return to the top of the page here.


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