Okay, I know these shoes will be divisive... But they are coming back, resistance is futile! Don't try to fight it. (All black Boston clogs, what seem to be an appropriately nerdy choice for my first day of work at Instagram. If the #evachenpose seems more cramped than usual it's because I'm on the school bus, er, shuttle to the Facebook campus in SF. Also, longest caption ever😅).
On the fashionably ugly front, these might be the subject of your next footwear love-hate relationship. Former Lucky editor-in-chief Eva Chen posted a photo of the Birkenstock clogs she's wearing for her first day on the job at Instagram, with the disclaimer: "Okay, I know these shoes will be divisive...But they are coming back, resistance is futile! Don't try to fight it."
At first glance, the German footwear company's Boston style is just the warmer cousin of the classic two-strap Arizona, which defied all odds to become the fashion industry's favorite sandal last year. Birkenstocks (and the array of lookalikes that flooded the market), were a top-seller for summer 2014. The trend can be traced back to late 2012, when Céline showed faux fur-lined Birk style sandals on the runway.
The last time the shoes were stylish was the '90s, when the exceedingly practical kicks were paired with crunchy fare like Grateful Dead concert tees and hemp chokers and were (for the most part) covered by the flares of low-rise bell-bottoms (the back of which were always completely chewed up from the cork of these Birkenstocks. The shoes were first imported to the U.S. from Germany in the mid-'60s, but the brand has been around much longer. The label has existed since the late 18th century, and the signature super-wide, super-supportive footbeds, which are a trademark of the comfort-first style, were first designed in 1897.
Chen isn't the only one getting chummy with these spartan clogs: The style is completely backordered in 12 out of 13 available versions on Birkenstock's site. (Though if you're a size 4 or 5, a pair of taupe suede Bostons can be yours now!) Back in August, Birkenstock's PR and events manager, Matt Hundley, tipped off The New York Times to the brand's next big thing: “On the heels of the Arizona is the Boston clog." You might not love them yet, but if the Boston is anything like the Arizona, they'll certainly grow on you...