Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Clarks Desert Boots:
Nathan Clark brought the design for the desert boot back from Egypt with him after the war. Initially a staple of the Beatniks, the boots were adopted by the Modernists which led to its position as an essential part of any Mod's wardrobe. Equally at home with a suit or jeans, the desert boot is another utility item. Due to Clarks ubiquitous presence on the high street, desert boots were also widely available whilst cheaper non-branded alternatives could be purchased from newspaper and magazine adverts.

With the commodification and commercialisation of the look brands emerged. The brands that offered the right product at the right price, or were the only manufacturers of particular items, became pre-eminent and well-established. Tailors and bespoke shirt makers went back to servicing their rich clients and the City Gents whilst the brands catered for the younger market.

Post-1960s, brands diversified so as not to become too readily identified with one relatively short-lived youth movement and, therefore, limit their appeal and selling power. However, connotations get attached to brands and these connotations are hard to shake off. Indeed, many modern brands seek to exploit these connotations and create them if they don't already exist - you need only check out the Ben Sherman website or look at high fashion's adoption of the "Modern Mod" and retro looks for instance.

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