Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sole Power

If you're up in the northeast today you already know how shitty the weather is.  This got me thinking about various footwear options for this time of year.  Most of you guys are familiar with my very public love affair with Bean boots, but not everyone shares my sentiments.  And, quite frankly, I don't work in an environment that even allows me to wear Bean boots to work, or any type of rugged footwear for that matter.  If you find yourself in a similar bind or with an aesthetic lean towards "hardbottom" shoes, let me implore you to pick up a pair of shoes complete with a Dainite sole.  Dainite are famous for their studded rubber soles, which have been made in England since 1834.  Most guys who care about clothing balk when they hear the term "rubber sole", as they very well should.  Rubber soles, over time, have become analogous with shit quality "dress" shoes made by blind child slaves with one arm overseas in countries ravaged by civil unrest.  These soles, often glued onto shoes, are main offenders that need to be avoided.  Dainite's soles couldn't be more different - they trade out carbon black for Silica and aluminum silicate and are welted to the high end shoes they often grace.  Long story short, there is not a finer, more highly recommended rubber sole that I know of.  So let's get down to brass tacks, why the hell should you buy a pair of F/W shoes with a Dainite sole? Well, for starters, they don't look like rubber soles.  That next level rubber science mumbo jumbo I mentioned earlier yields such a high quality sole that Dainite's rubber soles could be easily mistaken for something much "nicer" (my own Dainite clad shoes often have).  Their heft and look makes these a form purchase as much as a functional one.  Then there are the obvious benefits of a rubber sole - traction, durability, comfort, blah, blah, blah.  When it's raining or snowing this time of year you would be an absolute fool to break out your leather soled gems.  Water damage, along with the various other stuff all over the place (i.e. gravel), seriously cuts the lifespan of a shoe and that's the last thing you want for your latest and greatest longwings or brogue boots.  You can always buy galoshes, but, let's be honest, that's not always the best look for some of us.  Moral of the story, before you spend that Christmas bonus on some new kicks do yourself a favor and at least think about how you are going to wear your new shoes.  Do you walk to work? Or spend a lot of time outdoors this time of year?  What's the weather like in your neck of the woods?  You get the idea.  Dainite soled shoes can be easily found at many top UK shoe brands (and some US brands such as Rider Boot Co.) since the weather on the other side of the pond sucks.  Something to think about on a rainy day...


-L.A.S

30 comments:

  1. I've got a pair of Bass shoes, actually, with a Dainite sole. It's really comfortable and durable as hell.

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  2. "made by blind child slaves with one arm overseas in countries ravaged by civil unrest."

    dang dude, hahaha

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  3. In the picture the shoes have a suede upper. It seems weird to have a wet weather sole on suede shoes cause you'd probably leave those home on a rainy day right? Am I missing something?

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  4. Dustin- The power of hyperbole!

    Anon @3:21- Yeah, kinda silly combo, but the pic was used to illustrate the Dainite sole itself and the welt.

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  5. Good point Anon, but I have a pair of MM bucks that have been waterproofed so I wear them in all conditions.

    LAS, do you know where I buy Dainite soles to have put on by a shoemaker?

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  6. Anon @3:21 - Suede gets a bad rap re: water-resistance and durability. It is surprisingly resilient to water exposure, and in some senses a more practical material than calfskin. I have a couple suede shoes with Dainite soles and they're my go to shoes in wet weather.

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  7. I like the Dainite sole over the Commando because it has a slimmer and sleeker look to it.

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  8. Galoshes are pure function. I don't see how they can be a bad look if conditions call for them. That's like refusing to wear a raincoat in a downpour because it will obscure your carefully curated get-up.

    I don't care how little concern you have for your uppers, wrecked/dirty shoes (and socks, and pants) and mincing about trying to avoid puddles is never cool.

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  9. Good stuff LAS. Pretty sure Church's and Crokett & Jones offer Danite soles.

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  10. Anon @4:41- With that river you just cried I probably should get a pair of galoshes.

    In all seriousness, Galoshes often look like shit (SWIMS not included) and there are better "pure function" options that also happen to have some form to them. Let me think of an example real quick. Oh wait, you read the post, right?

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  11. Re: "With that river you just cried I probably should get a pair of galoshes." Even if I differ in my opinion about some of the things you post, I expect better than that. C'mon, man.

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  12. Anon @5:04- Damn, I thought that was incredibly clever! Next time, my friend, next time...

    Thanks for stopping by.

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  13. I'd probably be testy too if, as a grown man, someone was dictating that I could not wear weather-appropriate footwear to work. WTF?

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  14. Anon @5:13- I know, right? I'm gonna have to go after somebody in HR. Fuck the employee handbook.

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  15. Straight up. You should draw the line at the paper hat.

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  16. Anon @5:24- You would think White Castle would want their employees to look presentable. They won't let me wear my Bastian chesterfield anymore either.

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  17. Tell that assistant night manager to back off before you put your foot so far up his rear that his breath smells like an inveterate sock-less shoe wearer's exceptionally funky feet.

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  18. Swims are really really bad. No one should ever wear those fucking shoe condoms under any circumstance.

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  19. E$- checkout bnelsonshoes.com They do quality work and can do dainite soles.

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  20. Fuck Dainite! Drinking Chianti is where it's at. C'mon, brah.

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  21. Lawrence, you getting paid for that little snippet? Damn...

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  22. LAS: I approve of Dainite. I also approve of your troll handling skills. Nicely done. btw, do you know if you can order just the soles from anywhere? I'd like to get one or two pairs of shoes resoled with Dainite, but none of the shoe repair places in my area carry it..

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  23. Dainite on ice, that's nice!

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  24. I remember seeing The Little Mermaid on ice. Totally worth it.

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  25. I'm for style, flair, etc. as much as the next chap. But i agree with whomever above suggested that function over form (substance over style?) is the priority when it's raining like shit. Galoshes, those black rubber prophylactics for shoes, plastic bags -- for Chrissakes, anything to spare the Church's or E. Green's!

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  26. The Striking FellowDecember 2, 2010 at 5:08 AM

    I don't even need Dainites. I got vibrams on my brogues. Ready for urban warfare.

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  27. Great post. I was leaning towards commando for a pair of MTO Tricker's I'm planning in my head, but I think you've convinced me to go with Dainite. I like the lower-profile of the Dainite, but I'm still concerned about snow and ice (I live in northern Finland). Any idea of the relative traction/grippiness of Dainite vs. commando?

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  28. It's funny, I'm wearing Dainite-soled, suede shoes as I type. They're my "after the rain" shoes. When it's still raining, I wear the Bean Boots, and change into my real shoes when I get to the office.

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  29. Plus, Jack Reacher wears Cheaney Dainites.

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  30. I've got Dainite soles on at least two pair of Italian shoes that I can think of off the top of my head--a pair of Zegna ankle boots and a pair of Armani shoes--even tho Dainite is British and Vibram is Italian. The Dainite is harder and denser, it seems, and because it is flatter than the Vibram lugged sole, it makes a better sole for a dressier shoe than the Vibram does.

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