Converse x Carhartt WIP
A meeting of minds that creatively celebrates two of the most influential skate and streetwear powerhouses, Converse’s latest collaboration with Carhartt WIP sets its sights on honouring both the iconic One Star Ox Pro and Fast Break Ox Pro with workwear inspired off-white colourings. With both brands located at the heart of evolutionary street culture, and well-respected for their influential instigations across the underground, hip-hop and skate scenes, Carhartt WIP and Converse unite once more to recreate two of the most favoured skate shoes to date.
This two-piece sneaker release follows in pursuit of earlier debuts such as the pair’s Carhartt WIP x Converse Chuck 70 Hi from January 2021 and 2020’s tri-colour Renew Chuck 70 crafted from upcycled Carhartt workwear sourced from Beyond Retro - the same UK-based vintage retailer that assisted in the creation of Converse’s CTAS Renew Denim collection from February the same year. Although seemingly individualised in their lineage, with Carhartt ultimately hailing from Michigan’s industrial underbelly and Converse stemming from noted ‘60s era courtside legacy, both parties share an undoubted passion for skate, with shared team-riders such as Roman Gonzales, Felipe Bartolomé, Rémy Taveira and Polar Skate Co.’s Aaron Herrington featuring in shared-interest edits such as the 2018 ‘One Star World Tour’ and the NYC-shot ‘Converse CONS Nightlines’ film from 2015.
A basketball classic with an ever-evolving countercultural following, the Converse One Star is an internationally admired sneaker brought back to life in 1993 via Girl Skateboards team-rider Guy Mariano’s infamous part in the video ‘Mouse’, Supreme’s ‘Cherry’ full-length from 2014 and Converse CONS’ official One Star appointment in 2015. Receiving its initial Carhartt WIP x Converse retool in 2018 in the shape of the militaria-inspired Cordura® One Star, there’s no real surprise as to why both brands chose this iconic profile for their latest 2021 release. A classic white, black and gum-honey colouring crafted from a combination of suede, canvas and premium-grade leather, these collaborative Converse x Carhartt WIP One Star Ox Pros are inspired by mixed-material executions and an innate ability to meet the demands of any skate setting. An all-black rubber midsole is complemented by a gum-brown auxetic toe bumper and traction-led underfoot tread, whilst the mixed-material quarters pair durable brush-backed suede with reinforced canvas. Classic One Star and perforated decals decorate the sidewalls, whilst the recessed 6-eyelet interchangeable lacing system pairs branded Carhartt laces with a custom-woven leather tongue. Sealed with a commemorative CONS interpretation of Carhartt’s iconic C-Wave motif across the cushioned sockliner and checkered decal backstay, with tonal reinforced stitching throughout honouring both parties commitment to quality craftsmanship and creative construction.
Reigning the courts long before the likes of Nike and adidas, the ‘83 debuting Converse Fastbreak is a mid-collared silhouette that rose to fame through Michael Jordan’s infamous appearance at the 1984 Summer Olympics. Snapped up by the growing skate scene just like the Dunk, the Converse Fastbreak Mid has continued to inspire, with the remastered sneaker featuring in Supreme’s ‘Blessed’ from 2018. A mirror image of its One Star Ox capsule companion, the Converse x Carhartt Fast Break Ox Pro is styled in a matching tri-tone colourway with mixed-material uppers paying tribute to both Converse’s hardwood legacy and Carhartt’s workwear heritage. A grippy gum-brown underfoot tread makes lightwork of any given terrain, whilst the supportive padded collar remains true to the Fastbreak’s original design from ‘83. Protective overlays across the bumper and heel counter keep unwanted scuffs and scrapes at bay, whilst the ornate metal-eyelet interchangeable lacing system secures the Carhartt branded laces across the ‘Converse CONS’ commemorative tongue. Custom sockliners and monochrome checkered backstays complement the neutral-hued design, whilst its noted sense of Chevron-Star nostalgia continues to be celebrated by both of the contributors.