Converse – All Star, Before Chuck Taylor

     Converse, we all know the name. At one point they essentially ruled the American shoe industry with an iron fist. Of course those days are long gone. During their heyday Converse had a wide array of shoe models ranging from the Bosey boot, Skoots, and the Chuck Taylor All Star. As time has passed many of Converse’s various shoe models fell out of favor with the public and as a result many are no longer produced, the Skoots being one example. Others survived such as the Bosey, which is still manufactured, but is hardly ever linked to Converse. However throughout time the Chuck Taylor All Star still remains. It is Converse’s most timeless silhouette. Before the Chuck Taylor All Star was called the Chuck Taylor All Star, it was simply called the All Star. When Chuck Taylor, an avid basket ball enthusiast, joined the ranks of Converse he took the All Star and modified it subtly. Changing the pattern of the sole and adding the famous All Star ankle patch. Later Converse honored Chuck Taylor by adding Chuck Taylor’s name to the All Star model’s ankle patch and thus birthing the Chuck Taylor All Star. Throughout the subsequent  decades Converse continually made changes to the Chuck Taylor All Star. However at one point Converse began to feel nostalgic and in1987 they made reproductions of The All Star, with the Chuck Taylor branding intact. The USA made reproductions seem to be from a very early era in Converse’s history as they posses 10 eyelets instead of 8, there is no pinstriping, the bumper is a different style, theres no extra stitching towards the bottom of the eyelets, and an older style black label is used instead of the current white label, possible to make it look more like the label of when it was first released. Many of the original reproductions were made in the late 80s, however another reproduction model was made in 1997. In the 90s they a made a few styles and they used the 90s Chuck Taylors as a base. Many of these original Chuck Taylor All Star shoes are hard to find, though they are a reminder of what Converse once was. Converse Japan later reissued the 1987 Chuck Taylor All star in 2007. Below are some examples of the various reproductions of the Chuck Taylor All Star made by Converse before they were owned by Nike.

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Canvas and leather. Circa 80s.

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The All Star circa 1928. The All Star patch is present.

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Ten eyelets, no pin striping, no stitching around the last bottom eyelet, black label.
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Converse Japan release.
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All leather build. Converse Japan.

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Plastic star insert.

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Rare 90s version, hardest of all to find. Pin striping is present, made of suede and leather instead of canvas and leather. Star on All Star patch is a plastic insert.

 

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