Chances are you’ve been noticing a subtle trend in 2017: Velcro straps.
Not since 2016 have we been anticipating such a resourceful trend. With skaters burnt on the excessive amount of rubber toe shoes, something like a Velcro strap seems refreshing and concerning altogether. When any product significantly changes a skateboarder’s aesthetic, many questions are left lingering in the air. These Velcro-strapped skate shoes prompt queries that we witnessed during the still lingering rubber toe period: “Will I look like a baby? Can I pull this off? Do I look like an idiot?”, etc…
But with this freight train of a trend approaching quickly, you’ll more than likely witness your friends and acquaintances preparing themselves for what will be trying times. Luckily, there are a number of Velcro-backed models for you to choose from when attempting to acclimate yourself to this sea change.
Of the limited options, Rowan’s velcro take on the classic Old Skool is probably the most subtle. The all-black colorway eases any skater into wearing shoes that essentially suggest “I’m too lazy to tie my shoes” – but if worn at night, no one will notice. Even if you’re caught wearing them, the mysticism of the Vans well-known checkerboard pattern will save you from any criticism.
Fun fact: you can have both of skateboarding’s most resourceful trends in one shoe.
Nike SB throws their hat into the race with a Numbers-backed collaboration featuring their trusted Blazer Low. Of all the options, the Blazer Low AC X Numbers features the most ambitious colorways – and we refer to them as “ambitious” considering these palette choices blatantly showcase the velcro straps rather than going with the all black look. Given the Blazer’s admiration, expect skateboarders to bravely adjust to these or spray paint them all black until they become accepted amongst the skate community.
Back in 2016, the likes of Tyshawn and Na-Kel were weartesting a Matchcourt featuring velcro straps. And yes, while we’re well aware of the Vans Style #23, Adidas embraced the idea of incorporating Velcro-strapped skate shoes before other brands decided to pull the trigger in what is now the peak of this very trendy trend. Will these eventually find their way onto skateboarder’s feet? Only time will tell if a Velcro Matchcourt will find itself out of the sampling stage…
While all other brands opted for a safe low top silhouette, éS went high with their Square Hi. With inspiration coming from their heritage Theory 1.5 model, this vulcanized offering sticks out against the competition. Despite it’s very “16 year old mall skater” feel, this hybrid model could potentially make waves for combining traditional laces and a lace protection with a rubber-backed strap. Moreover, ankle protection makes this the most versatile “strapped” model amongst the trendy competition.
Strapped skate shoes are nothing new to skating, so regardless of feeling timid when wearing them, embrace it and they’ll pay back in dividends. Sure, you’ll need to get past that awkward phase of initially wearing them, but once you realize that you won’t have to be carrying around another pair of laces, you’ll probably be a lifer (no pun intended).