Red Wing Shoes The Full Story

I admire very few brands of boots. They motivate my desire to raise the quality of boots brazilian. One of these brands is the Red Wing Shoes and now I’ll tell you why.

Red Wing Shoes The Full Story

When it was founded the Red Wing Shoes?

In 1905, a shoe salesman named Charles Beckman saw a increase in the demand for work boots and built a factory along with 14 investors. His goal was to make boots better than the ones that were on the market.

This was the Red Wing Shoe Company, with the mission to manufacture and sell boots durable and comfortable. The name and the logo are a tribute to the city that has the name of the indian who led the original inhabitants of the territory around the Mississippi river.

As it was the first boot from Red Wing?

The work boot’s original Red Wing was made of leather and had laces and buckles to adjust the cup. The boots were (and still are) produced in partnership with the tannery S. B. Foot Tanning, which has been operating since 1887. Today it belongs to the very Red Wing, who develops his special leathers.

It was with that boot, Red Wing, Minnesota, that the brand gave its first step. The factory quickly became a major supplier of footwear for industrial workers, primarily among the iron mines locations.

The quality of the product soon generated national interest, and the brand soon became one of the most popular in the United States.

Photos of the factory Red Wing original

The First World War

The production of boots followed strong at the factory, Red Wing even happen in the First World War. By order of the american government, the whole production of the boots started to be allocated to footwear for the military.

It was at this time that the brand ended up developing some text that later inspired boots classic as the Red Wing Iron Ranger, made for the miners.

The post-war period generated a boom in the american economy and in industrial activities, greatly increasing the demand for footwear work.

The Red Wing began to develop boots for the specific activity, launching new models for farmers, for oil rigs, diggers, and various other occupations.

More than the style, the quality has always been the differential, as we see in the first ad:

Post War: The 1920s

The decade of the 1920s was incredible for the economy of the United States. The return of normality after the war brought an industrial boom unprecedented, with accelerated increase of consumer demand and changes in lifestyle. Everything seemed to be feasible through technology… the automobile, the cinema, the radio.

The logo is the winged Red Wing first appeared in 1928, as well as a boot playground for the adventurous kids. This boot had a side pocket for knives and became a champion of sales.

The brand has continued to grow, keeping up with the rapid pace of the country. The idea for another boot that is famous today also appeared at this time. Look at the catalogs and the ads below, and notice on a model with stitching on the beak style “moc toe”.

And came The Great Depression

If the decade of the 1920s was wonderful for the economy of the United States, the Great Depression made it clear that the 1930s would be very difficult. It was so bad that the tenants began to return the orders to the factories, without being able to pay.

The contraction of the economy had almost ended with the market of boots, and the Red Wing responded with the production of boots more cheap. Launched the No. 99 Boot, which never appeared in the catalogs of the officers. She was sold for 99 cents (which would be more or less 15 dollars today), while the average price of a boot cheap in 1920 was $2,95.

It was in 1934 that the Red Wing launched its first boot with steel toe cap, ushering in a new era in work safety. The 30’s also saw the emergence of the style Engineer Boots, which are boots without laces for bikers.

Another innovation to keep the plant producing, and to counter the crisis was the sale mobile shoe service), where the Red Wing brought the shoes and boots up to the plants, serving customers without intermediaries.

Red Wing in the 1950s

The 1950s was amazing for the brand. It was in the late 40’s that they launched the line Irish Setters, and the boots “moc toe” 877, and 865. The Irish Setter is a reference to the dog Irish Setter, which has the by the same color as the leather of the first boots of this line.

The pair of boots, the most high has been sold as footwear sporting (hunting, hiking, fishing) but it was a success among the farmers. This product was an overall success, helping the brand to establish itself in Europe, and planting a seed for the future boom in Japan.

Other novelties were the boots Pecos, released in 1953. This model, combining durability and comfort with the style of the boots country. The soles have also gained an upgrade, with a other another model named Super Sole, which had the sole attached to the leather through a process that promised durability and comfort as well higher.

From there to here

The brand Red Wing has continued growing and expanding their global sales. During her history she has never been very fashion, but became a classic that wore workers and families around the world. Has always been very dear and respected in the United States, thanks to the policy of local production and focus on quality.

We are in 2015. Much has changed in 110 years, but the quality behind each pair of boots remains the same. In more than a century of history, managed to find ways to stay competitive without having to follow the pattern of the world industry, that is to decrease the quality and increase the production.

Despite having globalized their operations, and more than half of the boots Red Wing are still made in the United States, with materials and local components, counting even with its own tannery, which is the same since 1905. The technology and the requirements of the work environments have changed, and the Redwing moved forward with boots more modern without leaving behind the past.

The main boots of Red Wing are utilitarian, but they also have a line of very cool called the Red Wing Heritage, dedicated to the models taken from the file history. This line was born through Red Wing Japan, which has a huge market passionate pro things vintage, mostly jeans and boots.

More or less in 2008, she has been integrated into the overall operation, and the models began to appear on the feet of the tuned in around the world. The main reason was the american crisis, which in a way has propelled the desire for durable goods and reliable, promoting local products and brands with lots of history, since the future was uncertain.

The line heritage keeps his eye on the past. What a day it was a boot for heavy duty work today is perfect in the wardrobe of any. But make no mistake. Even the boots and shoes this casual line are made to last, all leather construction goodyear welted, more or less, and the one diagram from 1934 up here.

Those who already calçou knows that is different… the boot is strong, stubborn, needs to be subjected to the use to but then becomes a faithful companion. Are not booties ballerina, shoes as boots, and it is from there that comes the durability over the years.

The longevity of the brand and its models, prove that the true quality of the product (where the customer does not see), and the satisfaction of customers will never go out of fashion.

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