We admit it, we find ourselves amidst the age of Sneakers. From Balenciaga’s grim-some but alluring Triple S, to the alien shapes of Acne Studios, ready-to-wear luxury brands have heard that the millennial consumer desires not fancy dress loafers, but impractical running shoes that will fit into the streets of the contemporary metropolis. But is there no middle-road for all of us who sees the ennui of formal-wear, but find it hard to reconcile with sportswear when we have spent most of a lifetime trying to escape it? If you squint, your present-day fashion diva could be mistaken for a straight fuccboi, and that’s not cool.
Enter Clarks, the seasoned British manufacturer who since 1825 has produced delightfully utilitarian shoes that with their inventive usage of crepe rubber, escapes the member’s club as much as it does the gym. Most distinctly, Clarks is lauded for its ankle-high desert boot, but it’s the unlikely little-sister that we’re currently in love with: the Wallabee. This polygendered moccasin was first launched in the late 1960s and became a stable with The Beatles and other musical celebrities – and ever since being re-popularized by Wu Tang Clan in a notorious 1993 music video (see below), the style has enjoyed cult status. Clarks continues to reinterpret this stable shoe, and we’re currently in love with the all-sand style, which was recently spotted on David Beckham. So don’t despair, dear reader: there is hope beyond the terror of sportiness.
Clarks Wallabees – $250 / €215 – via Clarks