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Category Archives: Personal HistoriesCategory Archives: Personal Histories
Posted on November 5th, 2012 by Red Wing Shoes
As we announced earlier, the 4558 is now available in Red Wing Shoe Stores across Europe. The guys from Tenue de Nimes have dedicated a special to the Evolution of the boot’s color, which was introduced first in 1952, and has appeared in various reddish-orange colors throughout the years. A rich history we’re proud off.
Have a look and learn all about The Evolution of Color:
Posted on October 24th, 2012 by Red Wing Shoes
We recently came across a unique and unexpected story thanks to one of our employees in Red Wing, Minnesota. Pictured here is a pair of “tiny” 877s, estimated to be a child size 12. Thoroughly enthralled with these tiny Red Wings, we spoke with Nancy, the aunt of the employee who brought this unique find to our attention, in order to learn the history behind these rare boots.
What Nancy told us is both remarkable and a testimony to the durability and longevity of a pair of Red Wing boots. Purchased used at a garage sale around 1969 or 1970, this pair of tiny Red Wings was worn by Nancy’s two brothers when they were four and five year olds. Once outgrown, they were passed on through Nancy’s family and worn by six other young boys over a thirty year span, including Nancy’s own son.
At one point, the boots were resoled by a Red Wing employee who replaced the iconic white crepe soles so the boots could continue their progression through the family.
“Many of our family members are in construction and homebuilding,” said Nancy. “Wearing these boots would make the kids feel like they were in construction, too. As soon as they put them on their whole personality would change into one of a little worker.”
After three generations and eight young boys, the boots are still in use today by Nancy’s grandson. And the only repair they have ever needed was a pair of new soles and some boot oil.
These little 877s have undoubtedly withstood the test of time and are a very remarkable and special family heirloom.
Posted on October 10th, 2012 by Red Wing Shoes
Our friend and costume designer Markus traveled to amazing India, shooting an eventmovie for German television. The crew is shooting the movie in Jaipur, which happens to be the homebase for Salim, a well known mechanic for the famous Royal Enfield bikes. Markus and two of his crew-members Daniel and Alex could therefore not resist the opportunity of riding this classic in India. They rented three classic motorbikes and set out to the holy city of Pushna, on a 3 day trip. Pushna revealed the many Temples, holy men and authentic beauty of India’s people to them. Now that is a good ‘trip’. Having survived the crazy traffic, where rules are the unknown, Markus sent us some great shots (shot by Alex Fischerkoesen) from their brief journey. Thanks for sharing Markus!
Posted on April 13th, 2012 by Red Wing Shoes
Our 200-series were first released in the 1950′s. That given, these boots have been with Red Wing for a long time. The best vintage pair we only found recently. They’re in Dan’s possesion, who wore them in highschool and preserved them in a unique and valuable (!) way.
“I grew up always wearing Red Wings. I was recently going through some of my parents’ things and came across two old pairs of boots that my mom had had bronzed. Since she never was able to bronze our baby shoes, which is an old tradition, she might as well do our boots – she
said. One is my brother’s and the other is mine from our high school days.”
Posted on October 26th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
Many people claim a need for authenticity is related to age. Nonsense. Have a look at this video starring chris Grodzki, founder of Stanley & Sons. He gives the answer to what’s authentic; passion.
True passion is what drives the guy to do what he does. Putting in all effort because he likes doing what he does is what makes it authentic…what makes it real.
Posted on October 10th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
Some of those stores around do not reflect a retail formula, but the owner’s character. And those are the best stores to drop by, as we experienced at Gasoline Alley. Talking to Burkhart, we mark his words: ‘Everything I do and did is because I like it, never because I have to.’ And when having a look in his store, one can guess what he likes.
The store is literally stuffed with memorabilia that tell a life’s story. Old motorbikes – he used to be a motor racer, model sail-yachts – he owns the boat that won Sweden a silver medal in the ’64 Olympics – and plenty of water-ski’s – he races the water on a frequent base.
Since we’re writing a blog, and not a book, we won’t go into detail on one of the largest vintage Red Wing collections seen in retail. When in Munich and looking for some history and stories, remember to stop by mr. Burkhart from Gasoline Alley.
Posted on June 13th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
One of Europe’s pioneers is Matthijs from Red Wing Shoe Store Amsterdam. He is part of the team that started the third Red Wing Shoe Store in Europe. Besides running the store, he is the man behind dyedinred.com, the weblog on anything workwear inspired. Time for a chat.
Why Red Wing? I am a denim fanatic. Red Wing and denim both age with grace. I feel most for selling quality products, something more and more people start to realize as well. It’s a product that feels right.
When did you get your first pair of Red Wings? That would have been about seven years ago. I worked in a denim store in The Hague, when I saw a pair of Engineers. I couldn’t afford them so for two months I cut down my budget for food. I had never seen a pair of boots that tough. I had to have those, at any stake.
Posted on May 6th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
Not just within our company do we observe loyal employees and multiple generations of family. Take Sven for instance. Sven was born in Sweden, moved to Minnesota at the age of five, and a while ago moved (back) to Stockholm, where he tries his luck as a pinstripe artist. Sven is a fan of our boots, and currently is kicking a pair of Iron Rangers, 8111; a well consider pick. He tells us why.
My grandfather used to work as an Iron Ranger in the Mesabi Iron Range, back in the days. So I wear a similar type of boots as my grandfather did back then. Read More →
Posted on April 26th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
Fredrik from Stockholm showed us his oldest pair of Red Wings, stocked way before he was born. `I found them on a flea-market in Bangkok three years ago and took them back to Stockholm.´ That´s quite a journey these boots have taken over fifty years. Now they´re out on the Scandinavian streets. A different climate though pleasing another happy owner.
After some research, Fredrik found the style number. These are pair of 214′s. They were first spotted in our 1962 catalog.
Posted on April 4th, 2011 by Red Wing Shoes
Nice vintage is often found while scamming through dad’s wardrobe. The old man’s closet is the place where boys become men… Tim’s Red Wings, stock-number 956, once belonged to his father. He found them fifteen years ago at the age of 18, during a treasure hunt. Going from boy to men, he felt he could need the support of these boots.
Tim: “I fell in love with these boots instantly. As with a lot of other clothes and goods of my father i was begging him for a few hours for those.”