History of Converse trainers09 August 2018
Converse trainers have been immensely popular for several years now as they are a lifestyle brand, in high demand with people of every age. The Converse business has a long and distinguished history, dating right back to 1908 when the Converse Rubber Shoe Co was launched by Marquis Mills Converse in Malden, Massachusetts. The company originally produced rubber-soled footwear for men, women and kids, but by 1915 had moved into producing shoes for athletics. The first Converse All Star Basketball shoe was issued in 1917 and the famed All-Star patch logo was introduced to the brand in 1932.
Throughout World War II, Converse focused on produced rubberised shoes and uniforms for the military, but went back to making athletics footwear after the war ended. Converse athletics shoes have been popular with American teens since the 1950s and 60s, but the company lost its sales monopoly in the following decades as many more footwear producers moved to making similar lines, for example, Adidas, Puma and Nike. The chevron and star logo used on a good deal of Converse footwear has been around since the height of popularity for the shoemakers.
Canvas footwear saw renewed popularity for casual wear from the 1980s onwards, but the failure of the All-Stars brand caused Converse to slip into debt and eventually file for bankruptcy in 2001. The business was acquired by a small group of investors, following its bankruptcy but production of footwear moved entirely overseas. In 2003, the Converse brand was bought out by Nike for $309mn.
Converse had always been popular with basketball stars but was gradually dropped as the official shoe by teams in the NBA. Some of the celebrities renowned for wearing Converse include Snoop Dogg and Rihanna and this contributed to growing popularity for Converse as a fashion accessory. The brand saw renewed popularity from 2014 onwards, as Nike expanded the brand to include other products and created new designs for the trainer. Converse trainers have now been adopted by skateboarders as unofficial uniform wear and the trainers have seen a real renaissance over the past four or five years.
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