Velcro has to be one of the most useful inventions of the 20th century. It can be used to fasten together all kinds of things, including clothing, bags, wallets and just about anything that requires two things that need to be repeatedly joined and un-joined. Perhaps most surprising though is that whilst I personally think of it as being a fairly recent invention, it was actually invented in 1941!
I’m not sure if they first appeared in the Eighties or perhaps earlier, but I distinctly remember trainers appearing that were fastened by Velcro and immediately on seeing them I wanted a pair. After all, who wanted to mess about with laces, which kept coming undone, when you could slip on your trainers and have them fastened in seconds?
Eventually I got a pair, once we had managed to locate a pair that were reasonably priced as most of the initial versions were made by the big names in trainers and so had price tags which my Mum wasn’t prepared to pay (and to be honest I can’t say I blame her either).
I forget which manufacturer made my pair of trainers (they were probably unbranded ones to be honest, a sort of shoe shops own brand) but I did love them dearly. They were dark blue in colour and the Velcro fastener consisted of a U shaped strap which was fed through two oblong metal rivets. You just needed to pop in your foot, pull over the strap and push it down and you were done. Brilliantly simple!
Whilst Velcro trainers are still available today (as are Velcro fastening shoes for that matter) you don’t tend to see them about quite as much these days for adults, though for kids they are still very popular given that young children can find tying laces pretty tricky.