Converse teams with Polartec to weatherize Chuck
Chuck Taylor never looked so good so wet.
Converse has unveiled its latest Chuck Taylor iteration, the All Star Chuck ’70 Polartec, the first shoe to apply the weatherizing technology of Polartec to a sneaker.
The traditional Converse canvas and rubber construction became the All Star nearly 100 years ago—1917, if you’re keeping score at home—and gets a major technological upgrade with the Polartec application. The Polartec Power Shield Pro membrane gets inserted between the outer canvas layer and inner tricot lining of the shoe, combining air permeability with an opposition to liquid for a water-resistant fabric that still allows the shoe to breathe.
Converse says the product’s combination helps keep the foot dry—both ensuring it doesn’t get too hot inside and protecting it from the outside elements.
Matt Sleep, a Converse senior designer, tells Edge that it made “perfect sense” for Converse to partner with Polartec to give the iconic sneakers the ability to handle fall and winter seasonal elements.
And in case you needed some style to go with your new Chucks, which will retail for $110 at Converse San Francisco and Soho, the shoe comes in a bright clematis blue high top and a gargoyle gray ox low, with each shoe using the other color for its tongue. The shoe’s eyelets also bring some extra color to the table with gray, red and turquoise notes.
“We inserted the Polartec membrane into the Converse rubber and canvas DNA while maintaining the Converse energy with the color combinations and use of color pop eyelets,” Sleep says.
With all this weather-centric construction, it is almost as if the Massachusetts-based team of Converse and Polartec envisioned Chuck Taylor in the Northwest. At the very least, they have his shoe set up for fall and winter.
Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, design and gear for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.