Make / Model: Converse Chuck Taylor Low
Around 1-2 years daily wear
Nike factories, probably sweatshop
So these are my favorite shoes, ever. Simple. Clean. Love them.
However, Converse has done a couple things to complicate this.
1. They were bought by Nike. Now I know Nike isn’t the only company using sketchy factories, and they, kind of unfairly, catch a LOT of flack for this, despite other companies getting a pass, using basically the same factories. However, Nike is so HUGE, they could influence the industry for positive change. The fact they haven’t, says something.
2. They sued the competition. When Ethletic was making a shoe that was like a perfect (ethically) chuck, they sued them. Now I get that you have to defend styles, because if you don’t then, well, you can’t defend them at all (legally, if design become ‘commonplace’, it fucks with trademarkability). But I think it still sucks.
3. They changed the actual shoe. In the 90s, the shoe upper was made of two layers of thinner canvas. Converse replaced this with one layer of thicker canvas. The result? They aren’t as soft or pliable. They may be more durable though.
For me, these shoes are a ‘loaded’ thing, an area where I choose between ethics, and aesthetics, and whatnot.
And over the years, I’ve landed on different sides of whether or not I will wear them, ranging from ‘fuck that!’ to ‘fuck it, ok’.
I guess the thing is, should a shoe be this complicated? Apparently, in the world we live in, it is.