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Converse

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How many skateboard companies can say they helped manufacture protective suits for the military for WWII? Converse Skateboarding can, sort of. As you might’ve guessed, the Converse Rubber Shoe Company started well before Converse Cons Skateboarding Shoes came on the scene. Converse started in 1908, but it wasn’t until 1917 that the popular Chuck Taylor (some of the best-selling Cons Skate Shoes) came around. Of course, people weren’t skating them just yet. Chucks were the go-to for kids everywhere aspiring to be just like their sports heroes.

For as long as people have been skating, people have been skating Converse. The Chuck Taylor Hi Top has always been a go-to. Its grippy, rubber outsole, rubber toe cap, minimalist silhouette, and classic foxing tape have all been borrowed and outright stolen by skate shoe designers since skateboarding shoes have been designed. Converse CONS were built on the CTAS, but that’s not the only shoe Converse had to offer skateboarders. The Converse One Stars and CTAS OX (the CTAS low-top) both are low profile silhouettes that feature the minimalist canvas upper with reinforced midsoles and foxing tape and Converse’s grippy, rubber outsoles. These details allowed the One Star and the Chuck Taylor low top to break in and offer the board feel and protection skateboarding was beginning to demand.

As skateboarding progressed, the design of skateboard shoes went through a period of excess. Shoes with minimal design like Converse that offered ample protection without sacrificing style were coveted and worn by skateboarders looking for a unique and affordable skate shoe. In 2009 Converse officially entered the skateboard market under the name of CONS with big name skateboarders such as Kenny Anderson, Nick Trapasso, and Rune Glifberg. In 2012, CONS hosted a skate event in Huntington Beach, California in which CCS team riders Aaron “Jaws” Homoki both participated and won prizes respectively; Jaws taking the Best trick for $3,000 and Raybourn winning the grand prize taking home $20,000.

By remaining true to its heritage silhouettes, Converse Skateboarding has attracted and retained big names in skateboarding while creating an identity that many skateboarders can relate to.