Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Generic Man

Kevin Carney, the creative director of The Generic Man/Generic Surplus, and I have more in common than just an appreciation for the classic and understated.  Kevin's roots are here in North Carolina and in his younger years he actually spent some time DJing in and around Winston-Salem - the city I called home for 4 years of my life.  With those days firmly behind him Kevin now helps run two incredibly cool shoe companies while also heading up a shop in L.A.  With The Generic Man getting some great press lately I thought it would be cool for Kevin to talk a little about what has become their "signature" shoe - The Naval.  With the weather heating up you can't go wrong with a simple hardbottom complete with canvas upper.  Shoes like that allow for serious airflow and keep your dogs cool and smelling right.  The Naval is easily my one of my favorite S/S options when it comes to footwear not only for its functionality, but its super clean looks.  In Kevin's own words:

"When creating the last for the Naval I tried to walk the line between the classic British toe shape and the Italian toe shape.  Not too pointy and not too round.  I also kept in mind that it is sometimes nice to have a stitched rubber outsole for extra traction and it gives this shoe a bit more of a sturdy look and ready for all seasons.  Initially we made this shoe only with elastic so it could be worn laceless but since it has adopted laces.  The sole has gone through some color changes from a lighter shade of cork to a darker shade of walnut as I feel it gives it a richer look.  Long live the Naval!

Below...The first pair is from the first production run of TGM for FAll 07.  This is my personal pair that I have worn hundreds of times over the past 4 years and to me the dirtier they get the better they look.  No resole yet...still holding strong.  Our factory prides themselves in being one of the best in Portugal so I have to say after 4 years of wear...these are solid....especially for a canvas upper."

"These are my feet...a pair of Naval's in cognac suede that will be coming out for Fall 10...already broke them in and are going to be my go to for the coming season.  Barney's will have these for Fall."

Below are some of the current colorways available for S/S 2010.



  1. dear TGM ... make shoes in size 14

  2. Such a great simple shoe and it's nice to hear a bit of the back story behind them too.

    I don't think I'd go as far as the white ones but I think every other colourway is well nice.

  3. Very nice looking shoes. I could see myself in those suede joints for sure.

  4. Are these available anywhere?

    - Jon
    Style Hunting

  5. I love all the styles but I wish some vegan options would become available. There's a lack of stylish shoes that are vegan right now and many of TGM's are so close to being vegan. Give it a try, please!