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The Return of Retro

Friday, September 12, 2014 11:47:47 AM America/Chicago

If you’ve notice, in 2013-2014 we have seen the return of retro sneakers to the athletic footwear industry. Almost every major brand has rereleased sneakers named after NBA players from the 90’s. Just to name a few, this year we have seen Adidas released the Mutombos and Kobe’s Crazy 8s. Nike released several colorways of Penny Hardaway’s Foamposites and Gary Payton’s Air Zoom Flight The Glove. Reebok released Shaq’s Shaq Attaq and Allen Iverson's Q96 Cross Examine. Most of these releases probably did better than their original release back in the 90s.

Retro Jordans paved the way for other brands to market and rerelease retro sneakers. Nike and Jordan are very good at playing the supply and demand game, by releasing a limited number of certain retros to keep the demand buzzing, which leads to driving up the price (A little #sneakernomics for you).

Pigging backing off retro basketball shoes, retro running shoes are also showing up everywhere. We have seen Onitsuka release the Ultimate 81; Saucony came back with the Jazz Originals. We can’t leave out New Balance; they have released 574, National Parks 998 and the 996. Nike released Air Max 1, 90, 95 and 97 this year. Puma and several other brands had their share of retro running releases as well.

2014 has been the year of Retro Returns. So if you’re can’t decide what pair of sneakers to buy while shopping a great choice would be to go with something retro.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Shawn Jones

Follow your feet

Tuesday, August 26, 2014 9:19:47 AM America/Chicago

Sometimes you just gotta get away. No matter how much fun it is to work at Shoebacca, you just have to escape from the day to day and as we like to say ‘follow your feet.’

So I decided to escape the heat of a Texas summer by exploring somewhere I’ve never been. I’ve always heard New England was nice, and what better time to experience a place with high’s that are lower than our lows here?

I spent the week in Boston and traveling Massachussets and Rhode Island. Some people ask why, but you can hardly ask why not! Boston is one of those cities that is gorgeous simply because it has held on to its history. Instead of ripping down buildings and replacing them with something ‘functional’ they try to keep the history in a place which is naturally alive with it.

While Boston is home to America’s oldest subway, what good is following your feet if you don’t walk everywhere? The city proper is not only small enough that you can walk across it in a reasonable time, its gorgeous enough its nearly impossible not to want to!

Of course if at the end of your day, your too tired to make it back, the pedicabs will be more than happy to get you home, or anywhere else you might still want to go!

Traveling the Boston harbor and doing everything from visiting Old Ironsides herself to sailing on a old style Schooner at sunset would seem to be enough, but Boston isn’t far enough into the Atlantic for me personally. So I took a trip out to Block Island in Rhode Island. 15 odd miles off the coast, and not as well known as Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard, but the sheer Modehegan Bluffs (check spelling) and inviting beaches make for a great trip where you can hike, bike, or moped about the island.

The boss made me come back to the office this week, but not before I made sure Shoebacca left its mark as far east as I can. I wonder if I can get him to let me do the same thing somewhere on the Oregon coastline next year? It can’t get more coast to coast than that!

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Fafnir Crow

World Cup 2014 Quarter Finals

Thursday, July 3, 2014 5:25:23 PM America/Chicago

What country are you picking as your favorite to win World Cup 2014? There are eight remaining countries, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Costa Rica, Colombia, France, Germany and Netherlands. These remaining eight countries will battle over the 4th of July weekend to advance to the semi-finals and considering the remaining teams, this is a wide open tournament for anyone to win.

World Cup 2014 Quarter-Finals

4th of July will be the first set of Quarter-Finals matches, so far the most anticipated and talked about match will be Brazil vs. Colombia with Brazil being the favorite to win the match as well as the World Cup.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Shawn Jones

FIFA Round of 16

Friday, June 27, 2014 11:43:50 AM America/Chicago

The Round of 16 is now set and the matches look awesome! First up, Brazil and Chile followed by Colombia and Uruguay. Both of these matches should be awesome to watch. USA faces a tough lineup when they play on July 1 and their route only gets harder from there. Below is a bracket we created that helps up keep up with the action.

I have been keeping up with the World Cup action and watching the USA in the World Cup has been a roller coaster ride; with the win against Ghana, the draw against Portugal, and the loss against Germany, my emotions have run the gamut. The good news: they are now through the Group of Death and on to the Round of 16. The Bad News: their road has not gotten any easier. They will face a tough Belgium team that dominated their group and past that, Argentina or Switzerland. I suspect that they will have to play their best every game to be able to advance past these rounds. I am hoping I get to watch them all the way to the finals. GO USA!!

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Mark Warren

Father's Day

Friday, June 13, 2014 11:38:00 AM America/Chicago

One of the sure indicators that Summer is here is the arrival of Father's Day. For me, it's not only a special day to reflect on the intangible gifts my father handed down to me as I grew up, but also to pause and express my thanks to the universe for my amazing daughter, Hannah. Being a father is one of those things you just can't comprehend until you become one. It's how landing on the moon looks to the rest of us: you can't truly feel it until you live it.

But, enough from my end. Here's a few words from fellow Shoebaccians about what Father's Day means to them:

Jessica Jones, Customer Service: Breakfast and a day full of corny Dad Jokes :)

Robert Schlachter, President: Father's Day means spending the day with the ones I love most. Exercising, fishing, eating and drinking and just hearing them call me Dad!

Jessica Contreras, Customer Service: Father's day, to me, means celebrating the man who played such a big role in my life and showed me so much unconditional love. My dad showed me the importance of family and hard work as I watched him work so hard to take care of us and give us what we needed. He's my hero :)

To all of the Dads out there, here's wishing you a great Father's Day Weekend from The Big Shoe.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Matt Thompson

Employee Spotlight: Steel Wheels

Sunday, April 27, 2014 6:09:00 PM America/Chicago

Employee Spotlight: Matt, CIO.

I've been doing construction projects for years. From building furniture (in the Stickley style and tradition) to remodeling whatever house in which I'm living. I went for years wearing Red Wings steel toes, which are a great choice if you're a boots-type person. But that was back before I realized all the choices available in construction-related footwear. When you're doing this type of work in a Dallas, TX summer... you need something a notch or two up.

My wife did me a solid this past Xmas: Timberland Pro Steel Toes. Imagine a magical wonderland where cross trainers jam into tune with steel toe protection. Now imagine that the aforementioned magical wonderland exists... and that you may step into it, if you choose to do so. Let me explain.

If you're like me, you may find yourself emerged in a weekend of replacing... say, eight interior doors. My house came with the sweet 70's doors which lack a bit of surface cosmetic character and can feel a bit flimsy. I chose to upgrade to six-panel doors. So, I hooked up the trailer and made a door run to Lowes (no offense, Home Depot, I spend plenty of time with you as well... they had eight, you had six...). I've got a nice inexpensive jig that I used to profile each of the doors I was replacing. In simple terms, I just pulled down the existing door and copied the hinge placement to make it easy to put back into place.

I've taken you down this path for a reason... just one example of where steel toes not only protect, but also come in very handy: when you're putting up something really special like a barn door with hardware from Rustica Hardware:

Door on my Timberlands

Door on my Timberlands

Steel Toes go a long way in protecting your feet as expected, but an added benefit I count on is being able to rest sheets of plywood on them, or... a heavy pine door. With my barn door project complete, I can honestly say Rustica Hardware has some of the coolest door hardware going, doing something different in an area like doors that's got an edge... kind of like what we do here at the Big Shoe, SHOEBACCA.

Rock and roll.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Matt Thompson

What does your Sole say about you?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 10:52:07 AM America/Chicago

They say you can't you can't judge a book by its cover, but I believe you can judge a person by their shoes. If you think about it, often times when you walk by someone you don't know, you look down at their shoes and make a judgment about what type of person they may be.
What does your sole say about you?

If you only had a pair of someone's most used shoes, I'm sure you could make a pretty good guess about what type of personality they have and some of their characteristics. The color, style, brand, and condition of the shoes a person decides to wear can help you make basic assumptions like age range, gender, general professional field, financial status and other personality traits.

For example if a guy is wearing a pair of CAT Steel Toe you can assume he probably works outdoors or in the construction field. If he's wearing a pair of Giorgio Brutini you can probably assume he works in an office environment.

A woman wearing a pair of these CC Corso Como Palomar could be considered a woman that loves to dress up, likes to be stylish yet simple. If she wearing a pair of these Puma Sky Wedge you could probably assume she's more laid back and probably prefers a pair of jeans over a dress or skirt.

P.S. Fellas remember to pay attention to your shoes, it can get you Brownie points or it can be the deal breaker for that special lady you’ve worked so hard to get a date with. :)
Posted in Employee Spotlight By Dapper Jones

Employee Spotlight - TransformationTuesday

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 12:26:00 PM America/Chicago

Employee Spotlight: Fafnir - Web Dude I've never been much of a shoe guy. I always enjoyed learning new things, but never really dug into shoes till I got here. They were just something you put on your feet. I wore loafers because I didn't have to worry about tying them. I wore the cheapest thing that would go on my feet to keep a piece of glass out. Since being here I've spent a lot more time understanding shoes. Why these are oxfords, even though I thought of them as sneakers. (It's the leather construction) I had never even thought to ask 'What is a midsole?' before, because I didn't even know there was such a thing. So when my old daily sneakers fell apart, I broke my habit of finding a bargain bin bottom of the line, and instead went looking for a good fit. I wanted something that I could wear anywhere. I go from the office to work on hobbies that end with me covered in mud and sawdust. If I have to stop to change shoes every time I change plans, it quickly would become a nightmare. I went with the All Black Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Ox because I could wear them to anything short of a full suit without a worry. Easy to clean, and a style that has lasted lifetimes.
Converse M5039
Everyone knows Converse has a huge selection of colors, but I went with black on black because I simply don't want to have to worry about it matching every day. As I branch out more, I might try something with some different personality, but I figure i'm doing good to actually think about it, instead of picking the first thing in my size. #TransformationTuesday brought me a long way don't you think? Converse Upgrade
Posted in Employee Spotlight By Shoebacca
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