Deck Shoes have also been referred to as “boat shoes” and have been made as footwear to be used on a boat. “Topsiders” is another name used for these particular types of shoes. The main material used for making these shoes is mainly leather and non-marking rubber sole. Some companies also make use of canvas instead of leather along with the rubber sole. Since these shoes have to be used mainly in wet condition, different adaptations have been made.
All the major components that are used in the making of deck shoes have a water repellent property associated with them. The usage of leather & rubber soles is an indicative of this fact. Shoemakers also apply oil as well to optimize the process of water repulsion. They can be worn by both men & women and are available in variety of designs, color schemes and prices. You would notice a certain pattern made on the sole of most deck shoes. This pattern is known as a “siping” pattern. The process performed is done in order to provide you with grip in wet surroundings. It involves making thin slits on the rubber employed in the making. This process was invented in 1923 and a patent was issued to on John F Pipe. A simpler version of this process involves a rotating drum and sharp knives. Recent innovations have miniaturized the entire setup and resulting in perfect sipping patterns for such shoes. In certain cases, for providing better traction the process may be repeated twice as well.
Paul Sperry is the individual who has been credited with the invention of modern deck shoes. This happened in 1935, and it was Sperry’s dog that lent him the idea for such boat shoes. The dog was able to move pretty easily on ice without slipping. Sperry utilized a siping pattern and the result was Top sider shoes which are now referred to as boat shoes or deck shoes. That boat shoe pattern became quite popular for people interested in boating or who spend a lot of time on deck. That design is still quite in vogue these days. Normally, these kinds of boat shoes are worn without socks.
Deck Shoes started as a footwear utility primarily for sailors, but now it has evolved as stylish footwear for people across the globe. A major population of countries like America, England, France and Portugal has adopted it as a fashion trend as well. This trend began during the late 1970’s and early 80’s. The variation of fashion can be in the type of leather being used or the colour of rubber sole being employed. Previously white non-marking sole was taken as a traditional one, but now the darker shade has made the fashion trend. Some companies offer soles that are fitted with comfort cushion for your feet. Some heavy duty ones uses a mixture of non marking rubber and latex reinforced with leather for better results. As per market survey, the price of these deck shoes can vary from a minimum of £30 to as high as £120, and the average being £60. A number of shoe brands are offering their own different varieties of such shoes that you can check out.