Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Happy Birthday Dr Marten!

Everyone should own a pair of Dr Marten’s in their lifetime, it should be on one of those ‘things to do before you die’ lists… number 28, buy, wear and enjoy a pair of Dr Martens.

Admittedly I haven’t owned a pair for quite a few years now, I last owned some when I was about 8 years old. But they were GREAT. I had some boots with flowers all over them. Now this may sound girlie, but I can assure you I was not a girlie girl when I was young, but I loved them and wore them pretty much everyday for about 2 years. I wish I could hunt down an old photo of me in them to show you all.

Several recent spottings of celebrities in Dr Martens has raised the brands profile, making them ‘cool’ again and they have found their way into recent fashion pages of magazines. Previously associated with certain stereotypes, such as ‘Goths’, ‘Punks’, or ‘Bikers’ but now they are seen as something ‘trendy’ and many high street chains have created their own versions of the Dr Marten boot.

I have been a bit wary of following this latest trend, as these boots are pretty chunky and quite heavy! I did try a pair on, but was definitely wearing the wrong outfit for them; jersey mini skirt with top + cardi, and I didn’t think I was quite ‘cool’ enough to pull them off! However, even though I’m not a current wearer of the Dr Martens, I can still appreciate the brand and what it represents.

April 1st is Dr Martens 50th Birthday. I wonder if 50 years ago the two German doctors who came up with the ‘cushioned sole’ which is the key component in every boot, thought that they would be celebrating this landmark birthday?

On reading up about the brand and its history, how the world of Dr Martens started up is quite interesting. The two German doctors who had been successful in creating a comfortable working shoe needed extra backing to take the shoes to the next level. It wasn’t until they placed an ad in a business magazine to try and gain backing that their idea became a reality and is how the association with Britain started. Griggs, the British boot-making company saw the ad in the magazine and decided to support the two Germans in their quest to supply a comfortable shoe to the working classes.

One thing I really like about Dr Martens brand is the variety of people who wear them and have continued to wear them throughout the years. The original target market; the working class, can still be seen wearing them today, many 40 something men pair their Dr Marten’s with their jeans or chinos and the shoe has become a staple piece of work wear for many.

The Mods of the 60s had a strong following of the brand, turning up their jeans to show the shoes in their full glory and they are still a popular choice for many Punks of today.

With fast fashion seeming to take over the world lately it is nice that some brands are celebrating landmark birthdays and show that they can survive constantly changing fashion trends and believe in their products and what they represent. Dr Martens do deserve a place in fashion history, to have survived the last 50 years and to celebrate this birthday as they are back in the height of fashion is a pretty impressive achievement. Happy Birthday Dr Martens, here’s to the next 50 years!

Clash sporting their trusty Dr Martens
 Daisy Lowe in her bright pink Dr Martens
 This Topshop boot has a strong resemblance to many Dr Marten Boots!

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