Brooke Wolfe, Staff Writer
Video by Ian Smith
With colder weather on campus, puddle-aware students have been turning to the ever-protecting comfort of rain boots.
Through the years, the classic has taken on a whole new meaning.
This fall, the Hunter Original boot has led the charge against chilly days.
“I think that Hunter boots offer a fashionable take on rain boots,” said junior Grace Takehara, editor of LuteLooks. “[They] are versatile, functional and offer a change from the familiar.”
The British boot has turned heads of more than fashion editors.
People of all ages and nationalities have taken the opportunity to upgrade their cold weather wear with these. Since 2007, sales have skyrocketed for the brand worldwide, according to the Wellington website.
With chunky socks or on their own, Hunters have had shoppers emptying shelves all season long. Retail stores like Nordstrom’s and online pop-up shops like Zappo’s and Shop Bop have been rolling through orders to catch up.
“I don’t have them,” first-year Maggie Watson said, “but I definitely want a pair.”
The stylish trend was intended for something far from its daily use.
The Hunter Boots brand began as the North British Rubber Company and supplied its everlasting shoes to soldiers during both World Wars. From the trenches to the Palace, the British Royal family fell for the boots in the 1960s and hasn’t stopped wearing them since.
Some say that the expensive price tag was meant for the elite — not the street.
“I haven’t seen them around yet,” sophomore Quinn Johnston said, “but I wouldn’t spend $150 on [a pair of boots].”
While some are mortified by the pretty penny, the statement piece can be understood by others.
“Personally, I think that they can be overpriced for the function of the shoe,” Takehara said, “but if you put thought into its versatility in your wardrobe, then the investment can be worthwhile.”
With the average Hunter Original boot claiming to last five years, the trend becomes more sensible. The original glossy black boot that has become the best seller in the United States is ticketed at $158.
If that boot lasts five years, then the yearly price for the rain boot is $32, which seems like a steal.
“Boots have always been popular,” senior Martha Meyer said. “They are just another kind of popular boot.”
After the misty mornings pass, the warm weather will bring an array of new footwear trends.
For now, Hunter Original boots will continue to warm the feet and empty the wallets of the puddle-runners ready to make the investment. ◼︎