According to experts, the North Americans have a penchant for hideous but comfortable and practical footwear. In the 1950s, the Kork-Ease sandal which was a light, cushy, durable and ugly wedge with a cork sole and thick, leather straps was introduce as a comfortable shoe. It enjoyed a brief fashion renaissance twenty years later. Popularity for the unattractive shoe continued with Birkenstocks and Tevas. But that is all in the past for now the hottest trend this Chrsitmas in footwear since the Teva sandal is the Croc. At first sight Crocs appear like traditional clogs with contoured insoles. The upper is made from special polymer materials, a lightweight, closed-cell resin material called Croslite(TM) and is both ultra lightweight and hardwearing. According to the manufacturer the soft upper moulds to the foot, accommodating all but the most deformed feet. Resistant to bacteria and odor, the new clogs are designed with vents to allow air to pass through the shoe keeping the feet cool. The heel strap can be worn at the back of the foot or forward for a fashionable clog look. Many attribute the success of this new shoe to comfort and hard wearing. People who are on their feet buy them for comfort. Crocs were the creation of a company from Boulder , Colorado and were originally made as slip resistant shoes for boating or outdoor wear. Since 2002 with the fashion for thongs in the US turned them into the must-have, all-purpose casual shoe. Seen everywhere from beaches to ballrooms, and offices to shopping malls the highly coloured Crocs are here to stay and available in women’s, men’s and children’s sizes. Sales have been so enormous there is even a medical grade range with the company about to release a Mary Jane variety. Crocs come in 19 shades, and some say there is a hue to match every mood and outfit. Crocs are not expensive to buy and because they have become so popular cheaper alternatives are now available. In the pipeline for this winter are mini galoshes called Frog Clogs designed for farmers mucking out the barn. It is sometime since a shoe style, so comfortable, convenient and cost effective has enjoyed such a fashion vogue. Slip on shoes including thongs and uggs made their comeback, post September 11th, with the introduction of increased security measures necessitating removal of shoes. No self respecting jet setter wanted to be seen fumbling with laces or straps when a simple on off action would suffice.
The greetings of the season to one and all.