Most of us would probably associate clogs with the fashions of the 1970’s. Surely Elton John sported a pair or two and if we lifted the hems of Sonny and Cher’s bellbottoms, perhaps we would get a glimpse of these fashion must-haves. Clogs, as we know them, have evolved greatly from the originals. Although popularized by the Dutch, the exact origin of clogs is not known, but it seems as though people have been wearing clogs for about 850 years . The original clogs were made completely of wood. Why would anyone wear wooden shoes? Besides being an environmental no no, (The poor trees!) they don’t seem like the most comfortable option, not very flexible, you would think. Well, it seems that the Dutch peasants spent a good amount of time working in the mud and these shoes were the best option for foot protection. Although most of those primitive clogs were eventually burned for firewood, clogs have made quite a few appearances in history. Clogs made a resurgence after WW2 when leather shoes became scarce and almost every Dutch village had its own wooden shoe maker, but the shoes came back most fabulously in the early 1970’s. At that time clogs were identified as sling back shoes with a thick heel and sole made of wood with leather or suede front straps. Often featuring buckles and studs, they were a fashion must have for every aspiring “Charlie’s Angel.” Spotted recently on icons like Kate Beckinsale and Naomi Watts, it seems that clogs have earned a permanent place in the world of style.
The Shoes Our Mothers Warned Us About
So what is it about clogs that make them so desirable? Well, clogs are edgy. They are definitely not delicate and definitely not conventional, yet the height is so flattering to the leg. After all, some outfits just cry out for heels, but tough heels. There is both a manliness and a femininity to them, which embraced the androgynous culture of the seventies and the anything goes freedom of today.
Clogs In the Summer
Clogs may be the shoes of the juxtaposition. Not only do they combine distinctly male characteristics of the work shoe with the femininity of the heel, they also make a great contrast for the skimpy outfits. They beg us to be daring. Pair them with a floral mini or cutoff jeans, or experiment with bikini tops and slip on dresses. Light clothes, heavy shoes, can you dig?
So, as much as you may love clogs, we probably can’t deny that there is another reason mother recommended we did not wear them. “You’ll fall off them and twist your ankle.” The mantra of all mothers trying to make well-meant attempts at saving their daughters lives, and probably having much the opposite effect. Well, we can’t guarantee complete safety, there are a bunch of companies that are now making a sort of sandal clog, that is a clog with a buckle. While still maintaining their edge, they manage to provide a little more walking stability, holding your foot in place more securely. Dansko and Top Shop both have versions. So now you have no excuses. Get out there with Kate Moss and Sara Jessica Parker and sport those summer clogs!