Review: Habitat Footwear – Quest

In 2009, Habitat celebrated their ten years of making high quality skate products and pushing a brand image that highlighted some of skateboarding’s more pure ideologies by expanding into the tough market of skateboard footwear. What I’ve always loved about Habitat was how their products are designed to not jump out at you; in a way they try to avoid attention by just doing their thing and knowing, deep down that they’re doing it right. This dynamic has been breathed into their footwear and I know I wasn’t the only one to give this notion a warm welcome; there are enough tacky hi-tops and regurgitated half cabs on the shelves now and we were in need of something reserved, practical and made with skaters in mind.

The Quest is one of the six models that dropped last year and my first pair of Habitat creptillians that have seen first-hand the darkside of the griptape. On first glance, it’s the perfect low-profile shoe: thin tongue, seamless toecap, smart colourways and vulcanised sole. It skates like a dream without the need for the often-redundant technical tomfoolery that’s attached to many a shoe’s description. As a vulc, the incredible board feel goes without saying but what sold this shoe to me was the comfort; there is a subtle inner-padding that’s frequently absent on low-profilers that feels awesome when paired with PU footbed. This was not a rushed business venture by Habitat, this model is a tangible example of how effective being proud and meticulous about your brand can be.

This particular model is one of three collaborative shoes with mid-century artist Charley Harper. The detail on the outside is so intricate that I wore the shoes for three days without even noticing it. But when you do… oh boy is this stuff legit. The outlines of various animals are very lightly engraved into the synthetic/nubuck outer with such precision that it’s an appropriate companion to the shoe’s practical rigor. I look forward to trying out another pair and you should probably have a go too.

Joe Moynihan

Austyn Gillette gives the shoe some loving below.

Line Check – Holiday 2010 1 of 2

Across the UK, skater owned shops are currently getting fresh packages from distributors dishing out the new products for the Holiday Season. Understandably, there’s lots of quality goods included in these packages and condensing our favourites into one Line Check didn’t seem as appealing to us as running two of them. So before you head out with the intention of blowing your Xmas savings, have a look at our selection of some top shelf products that are arriving in your local skate shop now.

Antiz have never been afraid to tell it like it is, so with the help of Ben The and Ludovic Gabriel they have produced the ‘Ass‘ Series. Just like everyone has an opinion, everyone has an ass; and the Antiz pro team are no exception to that rule.

Skate Mental have a huge range of decks available right now but those are our chosen six above, including O’Neill’s of-the-moment ‘Call Of Duty‘ deck and Matt Beach’s super rad Tre Flip model that provides Ewoks with the publicity they have always deserved.

Kill City are keeping things street in South Wales with their ‘Spray Paint‘ and ‘Marker‘ models. Note how good those sizes are; for those of you out there with pixie feet who haven’t made the jump up from 7.5″ here’s a good excuse to man up.

Tyler Bledsoe’s debut pro model for Alien Workshop is in shops now with a suitably trippy graphic to cause your own Mindfield to relapse. Crayon hooked up with the CSC mascot, ‘Boxman‘ and his model designed by the wonderful Philip Morgan is now available fresh from the press. Hype! are making a name for themselves with some superb web edits and quality decks to match and Karma hooks up with the insomniac Alex Maw who knocked up a couple of rad designs for their latest decks. We’re stoked on these.

Ace Trucks are starting to become a common name in UK stores so if you’re looking for something new to get your grind on with then try these out. They are selling fast having already made an impact on a competitive truck market in the US and are set to do the same here.

OJ Wheels have made a welcome comeback into the urethane spotlight this year and are our selected wheels alongside Andrew Pommier’s Tin Toy series for Momentum.

The winter warmers are in stock! Now, unless your skin is made of thinsulate material then you’ve probably noticed it’s absolutely bloody freezing outside; have a look at cozy jackets and shirts from Matix, Fourstar, Addict, Independent and Etnies right there above.

Ok, so we were so stoked on Beach’s 360 flipping Ewok that we had no choice but to include the matching tee in our t-shirt round up alongside other graphic gems from Girl and Hype! Uzi does it now…

Soletech may be reknowed for their innovative progress in shoe technology, but you shouldn’t think that less effort is put into their threads. éS and Emerica make some of the best clothes going and the cords and chinos you see above are nice, simple and ridiculously comfortable.

But if it is shoes you’re after because the ones your wearing are soaked through with melted snow then be sure to check out Habitat’s Footwear range. Like Soletech, they’ve got the talent and experience to dabble in more than just one area. We have a Habitat package to give away this month that includes a pair of their awesome shoes; click here to enter. And as per, DVS bring the goods with simple and effective designs in dope colourways. Port should be really considered more often.

Check back for more recommended products in the following weeks.