Firstly I’ll just clear something up. These aren’t swimming shoes. I suppose you could go for a dip in them, it would definitely make for an interesting look but probably not advisable. No, I’m talking about shoes which can survive a wet British Winter and come out the side still in one piece. With the flooding, high winds, frosts, fog and possibility of snow and ice, it’s not an easy thing surviving our seasons. Luckily Norwegians know a thing or two about harsh conditions and a little brand called SWIMS came up with the bright idea to create footwear that can tackle it head on.
What started off in 2005 as a line of colourful galoshes, since then it’s grown into a global business that’s stocked in over 30 countries across the world. Swims is a unique footwear brand because it isn’t centred on the latest styles or the plushest Italian leathers, it’s focus is predominantly on function, fun and practicality. They’re like that kid at school who does all the un-cool things but still manages to land at the top of the food chain – all the girls want him, all the teachers love him, he’s top of the class, plays every sport and is captain of the debate team. A freak of nature. Don’t get me wrong, the silhouettes are current with their brogue boots and shoes, but it’s everything else that goes on in that shoe that makes them so unusual. Swims make having dry feet super cool.
I suppose you could describe this collection as a weird hybrid between high fashion and outdoors adventure. It’s got all the features you’d be looking for if you were intending on rambling around the Brecon Beacons, but in an attractive little package. It’s a concept that makes complete sense really. It’s absolutely pouring it down with rain but you don’t fancy donning the wellies and having your mates rip it out of you all day. You know wearing your favourite leather brogues isn’t a good idea because you’ll literally be watching the life ‘washed’ out of them. Enter the Barry brogue. A cracking little number that offers the aesthetic of a brogue, comes in a nice array of colours and won’t fall apart in the rain. Here are just a few of Barry’s qualities: water resistant and Scotchgard treated body, ergonomically molded footbed, anti-bacterial, anti-odour, shock absorbing, 100% natural rubber non-slip soles, soft and comfy fit. Not bad for a brogue? And he’s also available in a boot. Next comes the other Barry. A workboot that’s ideal for winter with it’s warm upper, nubuk leather and waterproof lining. All the same winning attributes as it’s brogue counterpart, just a little more rough and ready.
If you want to having a singing in the rain moment on your way to the pub, knock yourself. You’re feet will be dry and toasty upon arrival. You’re dignity might not be….but at least you’ll still look good.