A casual buy no. 28

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I grew up in Clarks, I think I might have mentioned that on here before. At my first school they were seen as rather goofy, in a ‘teacher-wears-em’ kind of naff way. I especially remember the Clarks ‘Nature Trek’ shoe, with that big Cornish Pasty swoosh of lopsided leather and stitching, atop a lush comfy sole. I was torn between wanting to kick them off into the bin, or giving in to their undoubted comfort (they were scientifically measured to protect my growing feet, not that I cared – schoolyards are hard places for kids with teacher’s shoes on).

Through nostalgic eyes, moistened by the onset of (very) early middle age, I realise they were probably the best shoes my parents could have shod my little pinkies in, and they looked good, even though my pre-teen rebellious nature couldn’t see it at the time.

So, I love Clarks nowadays, and along with the Rambler, these Oberon boots are probably the closest thing to the prehistoric Nature Treks. From the first time I took them out of the box and wore them, they were as comfortable as an old pair of bedroom slippers. And therein is the real reason Clarks are the best shoes around, function with universal style, nothing fussy or pretentious, just great footwear that’s more than fit for purpose.

How we were: Nature Treks on the left

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