Sienna Miller agrees. Ditto for Kendall Jenner, Kaia Gerber, and Kristen Stewart—a group of women with distinctly different personal styles who found common ground in the functional Birk’s comfortable interior and sleek, structured exterior. For the former, wave-featured, fleece-lined Boston shoes fit her innate bohemian look. Originally introduced at 1979, these comfortable, casual clogs are a natural extension of the Birkenstock sandal, but offer all-weather toe protection along with the orthopaedic benefits of their signature sole. They became lurkers on college campuses in the ’80 era and have been on the fringes of the fashion subconscious ever since.
When brands such as Dior and Manolo Blahnik came knocking on Birkenstock’s door, Boston jumped into the luxury market on an equal footing. Jenner is a self-proclaimed grandma who finds joy in Bode quilted jackets and griege Bostons, while her Gen Z friends believe that Birkenstocks are no longer a marathon runner’s favorite or a chef’s friend, but a viable fashion credential . Like us, they accept and find it hard to give up podiatry benefits once they succumb to support shoes.
Then consider the similarities between Birkenstock and Ugg. Like Boston’s revival, there’s nothing quite like the return of the shearling-lined surf bootie 2020. During the lockdown, we agonized over them and found comfort in the fact that Kaia, Kendall, EmRata, Irina Shayk and others also wandered around in languid, snug jumpers. Popular brands from Y/Project to Molly Goddard are scrambling to work with them, and we’ve seen a number of popular styles of the nostalgic boots once loved by Lindsay Lohan and Madonna.
Birkenstock Clogs and Ugg Boots have become the norm during a time of enduring chaos. How should we give up the equivalent of safety footwear when everything else is changing? The Hemline Index shows that when the stock market goes up, skirt hemlines go up—fashion becomes more playful—so it’s no surprise that we’re at the other end of the post-mini budget, hibernating in utilitarian fleece-lined mules. The hottest product in the world? Most toast is more like.