You would have to search hard to find a bigger skateboarding legend than Natas Kaupas, his contribution to the scene will be firmly set in the history books forever. Lakai, being one of the top skater run shoe companies out there, have rolled out a guest shoe with Natas this week as part of their exclusive Echelon range. Three colourways have been designed from their amazing Camby shoe that have a water-resistant film built into the canvas.
Look out for these beauties at those special skate shops that carry the Lakai Echelon range and click here for our interview with Natas in Marseille back in 2004.
If you visit us regularly you will remember that last year when the canvas version of these Lakai MJ’s hit our feet there were some serious high fives going down. Not only has this simple, slim, comfy design moved forward, it’s become a skater’s shoe of choice worldwide.
This month Lakai have released an ‘all weather’ range for the winter months ahead and thankfully these arrived freshly boxed the day before a trip to Portugal’s stormy beaches. The good news is that they came back looking like they did when we left with them on, despite walking around on wet sand whilst we took photos of really bad surfing on 3 foot waves and avoiding puddles all over Lisbon trying to find skate spots. It tanked it down.
The oiled mahogany thing aside though, Lakai have produced a classic, timeless skate shoe that is not pretending to be some lame sports shoe copy, they’ve kept their class and delivered what we need; the shoes we skate.
Ask for them in your local skate shop, the one that really knows their shit – you’ll probably find Lakai’s full all weather range there that should assist you through the coming winter months.
Supra sent us the new Lizard King signature model, The Shredder and it’s been tough to take them off, for no other reason than they are comfy straight out of the goddam box, and seem to pack more than enough space for your needs once they are on.
Supra have designed these with space in mind, but we’re not talking about your feet flapping around in them whatsoever, they just have that extra couple of millimeters of room in the toe allowing your phalange to move freely, the metatarsal to be protected but not squashed, (unlike some other models out there) and your cuboid reaps the rewards of a thin, but functional tongue that doesn’t slip sideways.
Underneath, the volcanized sole seems to grip like a god and the overall design of the canvas and suede mix looks dope. It’s a winner and in your local skate shop now.
Emerica have unleashed the brand new Justin Figeroa Laced shoe this week. If you missed the various Laced reviews over the years on this very mag, then you will know that Emerica have a classic skate shoe here that have always been awarded the love they deserve.
Talking of awards, will Figgy take the Skater of the Year 2012? Hype says he is in the mix for the big one but time will tell the story very soon. This Baker Figgy collab from Emerica comes in black green and white, has a strapped tongue, full length EVA midsole, gum rubber outsole and a zigzag tread pattern to hug your grip tape. Look out for them this winter and supprt skater owned companies.
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.
Changing seasons equals news gear and our recommendation for new shoes this week comes from etnies, whose Jose Rojo Enjoi collab shoe seems to be going down a storm out there right now.
This is not the first collab The Barge shoe has seen, the Thunder collaboration from last year was a success in terms of comfort, style and general wear and tear- the latter benefiting from the sturdy one-piece toe wrap that protects your pinkys whilst your feet do the shredding.
If you like a padded tongue protecting your feet when you skate and opt for a wider shoe for street skating then you will probably enjoy these as they provide more protection than your average slim skate shoe with a vulcanized sole but are not on the heavy side either. Of course these come with the usual STI footbed for increased comfort and cushioning so they are a dream once on your feet and they look pretty dope all round.
Enjoi these at your local SOS this month as they have just been released.
Over now to Sweden for a new Pontus Alv part and the news that his Emerica shoe is out now, and bloody nice it is too.
A launch party was held at the DIY bank spot heavily featured in the skate media of late, as well as Emerica releasing this edit for those of us who can’t get enough of one of skating’s genuine wild cards: