Crocs, maker of the
notoriously unstylish rubber clog, is trying to break into high fashion.
The shoe line will release “high-heeled pumps, sleek flats, and ankle-strap thongs,” early next year, reports Kyle Stock at Bloomberg Businessweek.
The fancy new shoes will be manufactured in Italy — not the brand’s Colorado headquarters. Prices will range from $US80 to $US120.
The line is part of Crocs’ push to distance itself from the clogs that made it famous.
Businessweek, reported earlier this years that the company is trying to double sales in the next five years and doesn’t feel it can do it with the polarising clogs.
A visit to Crocs’ homepage shows that the brand is promoting ballet flats and wedges alongside its signature product:
The clogs don’t have the best reputation.
“Search online for ‘hate crocs’ and you’ll quickly see why Crocs is eager to downplay the clunky clogs it unleashed on an unsuspecting world 11 years ago,” Matt Townsend at Businessweek wrote earlier this year. “Bloggers have denounced the rubbery footwear as ugly and an escalator tripping hazard. On YouTube, a woman cuts a yellow pair into pieces and then feeds them to a blender.”
But shoe designer Aaron Smith told Businessweek that Crocs’ brand name could keep it from finding success in the luxury market.
“Americans, in particular, really, really buy brands,” Smith said. “You just got to ask yourself, are people going to spend $US120 on fancy Crocs? If they get the girls from Duck Dynasty to endorse them, maybe.”
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