Cultural icon, fashion essential, sneaker – The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star is a valuable fashion commodity these days, none more so in Egypt, where the increasing number of often colourful Converse-laden feet pay testament to the brand’s growing cult.
Affirming its position as the coolest kid on the sneaker scene, Converse introduced the brand new Chuck Taylor All Star II to Egypt in pretty spectacular fashion, as the country’s top media, creative community and lifestyle influencers (and then Cairo Gossip) descended on Ras Sudr’s Kiteloop for an eventful weekend away.
The worldwide launch of the Chuck II has been branded as Converse’s biggest and most innovative in almost 100 years, when the original All Star was rebranded – in fact, it’s the first time since 1920 that the Chuck Taylor has received a revamp and it is said to be the beginning of a new era for Converse, as cool-dude creative director, Bryan Cioffi, confirms.
“We realised it was going to be the first step of a greater journey. We wanted to make technology, modern construction, and high-level design part of our identity.”
While the iconic silhouette has remained, it’s the engine of the Chuck II that has received the most significant make-over in utilising parent company Nike’s Lunarlon technology, as well as a micro-suede lining and padded collar and tongue. In layman’s terms, it’s a more comfortable and internally durable shoe – which is a welcome feature to those of us who regularly trudge through the streets of a hustlin’ and bustlin’ Cairo. So popular was the Chuck II upon its release in the US, that it sold out – the first and only Chuck Taylor to do so.
On first look, there doesn’t seem to be a major redesign – which is one of the reasons behind its immediate success. At a closer look, however, the Chuck II reveals small but significant details; the stitching is nicer, as is the canvas used, and there’s more depth and dimension to the All Star badge and eyelets. All in all, it feels like a much more premium product in your hands – and on your feet.
By Kalam El Qahaira