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Boat Shoe

Not only are boat shoes at home on the water; they’ve also been conquering dry land since the 1980s. Hardly surprising, given that these leisure shoes are extremely light and comfortable.

Boat Shoe

Boat shoes are lightweight leisure and summertime shoes made using the production method as moccasins. Paul Sperry, an American recreational sailor, invented them in 1935, using his dog’s paws as inspiration. Sperry created grooves on the sole of a shoe that echoed those on the paw. The incisions he made in the sole to create this effect provided the shoes with an extremely strong grip on wet surfaces; this level of traction is necessary for walking on boat planks, to give an example. The initial boat shoe prototype was the leather Top-Sider, which featured a notched sole profile (cut in a siping pattern).

 

Boat Shoes are made for wet or damp conditions

Present-day boat shoes are mostly made of light, greased, waterproof cowhide leather. They feature two to three brass eyelets treated for protection against tarnishing, their seams are sewn with nylon fibres and their heavy-duty soles are made of India rubber. Since boat shoes were originally devised for seafaring, they offer the best possible protection against water. They’re also unlined—lining would take too long to dry after a soaking. Boat shoes are also distinguished by a leather shoelace that runs along the entire opening of the shoe. This allows the fit of the shoe to be adjusted as needed.

 

Rough leather boat shoes provide colourful variety

Over the years boat shoes have become increasingly suitable for wear on dry land. Shoe manufacturers have duly noted their rising popularity, and today they offer boat shoes with a thicker sole profile and a leather lining. These new and more robust varieties aren’t well-suited for wear on boats. Since their profiles are much deeper, it’s easy for pebbles to get stuck in them—these pebbles scratch up boat decks.

Boat shoes are mandatory for sailors. For everyone else, they’re a stylish leisure shoe, one that can even be worn without socks during the summer months. Boat shoes were originally always blue; however, if you’d prefer to choose from a range of bright colours, reach for the rough leather varieties. They’re offered in all kinds of colour combinations.

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