Dr. Martens boots were the footwear of choice for a number of different groups of people during the late Seventies and most of the Eighties. Skinheads, Punks and Goths all found Dr. Martens appealing, not just because of their looks but also, though they might not admit it, the comfort of the boots.
I wonder how appealing they would have found them had they known a little more about their history though?
Dr. Marten was actually a real doctor believe it or not! Klaus MÃ¤rtens was a doctor in the German army during World War II. Whilst on leave he was enjoying a spot of skiing when he fell and hurt is ankle. He found his standard issue army boots very uncomfortable with his injury, and set about making a few changes to the boots design in an effort to ease his aching feet a little. Softer leather was one change, and another was to add an air-cushioned sole.
After the war MÃ¤rtens decided to go into business manufacturing his new boot design, and they proved highly successful, albeit with housewives over the age of 40! The company did well, and in 1960 the boots arrived in the UK, when British show manufacturer R. Griggs licensed the rights to make the boots for the British market. They made a few tweaks, such as reshaping the heel and changing the stitching colour to yellow, and they also named the soles AirWair, a name which became synonymous with the Dr. Martens brand.
The classic Dr. Marten boot design is known rather uninspiringly as the 1460. Black is probably the colour you would first think of, although the original release of the boots actually used red leather. These days the boots are available in a wide range of colours and also a number of very interesting designs such as polka dots or even Hello Kitty themed ones, complete with a little bow on the side!
The brand is also by no means limited to just this boot style, and you can buy both mens and ladies styles in shoes, sandals and various other boot styles as well.