The older I get, the more I embrace seasonal sartorial choices that prioritise comfort and versatility. Yes, I want to look intentionally put together, but can you blame me for wanting to be comfy? One shoe I always turn to for this middle ground is the Clarks Wallabee.
Clark’s was founded in 1825 by two brothers who made slippers from the scraps of sheepskin rugs. In 1950, they changed the footwear world by introducing their iconic Desert Boot, which immediately became a wardrobe staple.
In the late sixties, Clarks introduced the unisex Wallabee, designed and produced in Ireland, with its distinctive crepe sole, square toe box, and moccasin stitching. Fast forward to 2022 and the Wallabee is still one of Clarks best sellers, and with sixteen different finishes, you can pick the one that suits you best. I say you can’t go wrong with beeswax, dark brown suede, or my personal favourite, the hairy oak suede. So what makes the Wallabee the perfect seasonal shoe?
The crepe sole not only adds an insane level of comfort, but it gives Wallabees a laid-back aesthetic. Since crepe naturally darkens quickly, it will develop a patina that lends itself to a homey feel.
While the design of Wallabees has remained largely the same, Clarks has spent its shoe-making tenure striking the balance between old-world methods and new-age technology. The newest tech allows Clarks to design the most ergonomic insoles and cushioning. Couple this with the original crepe sole from the sixties, and your joints feel like you’re walking on air. Crepe soles are made from natural rubber that’s been separated at the micro level into latex – this makes them shock absorbent, incredibly lightweight, and flexible.
The Wallabee is something of a statement piece, and although they fit comfortably into your rotation, they’re far from just another pair of shoes. And when you can successfully pair good looks with versatility and intentionality, isn’t that the perfect shoe?