Clear Weather’s Donny may not have a familiar look for most with its asymmetrical laces, but the silhouette itself is. The shoe feels comfortable while introducing some new flare in to skateboarding. The Donny was our Pick Of The Month for February, but during those colder months, it’d be hard to justify skating a pair of non-insulated skate shoes. With the warmer weather among us, we finally got a chance to give you a more detailed look in to how the Donny’s perform.
The Donny is super light and thinly padded around the collar, which is more padding than many shoes have. The elastic tongue stabilizer acts as a way to hold your foot snug in the shoe, to the point where you almost don’t need laces. While maintaining a snug fit, there is also a solid amount of room in the toe area, which is crucial. Being able to wiggle your toes around can make a huge difference for your push. The Donny fits like an optimized Vans Era.
The suede patch works- for me, anyway. My ollie and kickflip areas are almost the same, so I tend to wear out the side of my shoes rather than the tip of the toe. The placement of the suede is – for lack of a better phrase – where I need it. Aside from the suede, the only other wear on the upper is on the collar. This area gets worn out mostly due to lack of precision when flicking. And I have to say, I was a bit worried about ripping right through the canvas, but these show surprisingly little wear.
I was a bit disappointed when I ripped through my top lace, even with the soccer-style lace protection but then I realized one thing: the top eyelet is roughly in the same place on the Donny as it would be on any other shoe with a regular eyelet pattern, so while the top lace still ripped through, the others that would have also been in the line of fire remain intact. Verdict: asymmetrical laces work for skateboarding perfectly.
The wear on the outsole is more noticeable than the wear on the upper; the textured portion of the foxing tape has been worn smooth. For some people, this is an immediate issue, but for me, this is where a shoe really hits its sweet spot. Even with the smoothed out toe, the grip still feels solid and the flick has yet to turn into a scrape. In addition, the wear on the outsole tread is barely noticeable and I still get a good grip on my board every time. I’ve skated these shoes for about ten hours of mostly flatground, and they have plenty of life left in them. The support in the Donny is very minimal. It’s a thin, canvas low with light padding around the ankle, so if you skate gaps and handrails, this may not be the shoe for you. I find that it’s very suitable for my type of skating: flatground, low impact street skating. It gives ample room for my foot to wiggle but also has a snug fit and doesn’t flop around.
Clear Weather’s “Donny” is a great low-impact option that doesn’t weigh your feet down, and the mostly canvas construction also keeps your feet cool. This, combined with the shoe’s low profile silhouette, make the Donny a great Spring/Summer shoe. At $65 a pair, this shoe will conserve your paper presidents and will keep you styling longer than most comparable models.