Converse stars


The One Star is back for the third time. The classic Converse silhouette made a name for itself on the feet of the world’s best basketballers and 20 years later, transitioned to the soles of skaters worldwide. Now in 2017, the One Star returns to leave another mark on youth culture.

The Chuck Taylor had Converse flexing their muscle with a monopoly on basketball sneakers for a few decades, but when new brands entered the scene, it was time for a change. The 1969 release of a new, deluxe Leather All-Star revolutionised Converse’s basketball offering, upgrading materials and fit to counter the increasing competition coming from rival brands.

As the 70s rolled around, low-cut kicks were beginning to see court time in pro basketball, and Converse caught the wave with a sleek new offering. Alongside their new-look ankle-height staple, a versatile sawn-off All Star was released. Sporting stripes and no obvious Converse branding, the All-Star was a bold new look for the foremost footwear brand in the game.

In ’74, Converse dropped the stripes, added a star to the vamp and re-launched their low-cut kicks with an updated look. The newly-rebadged One Star was a smash for one year, before being removed from retail shelves indefinitely.

In the days before online auctions, grails, raffle systems, Joe LaPuma and Benjamin Kickz, sneaker collecting was an obscure hobby practised by few and publicly discussed by fewer. However small it may have been at the time, the early-90s global community of sneakerheads had deemed the One Star, now a faded 20-year-old memory to many, a highly-coveted classic.

Converse got wind of the streets’ fever for the vintage flavour, and in 1993, the One Star was back in stores. Perfectly timed at the apex of the grunge movement and skateboarding’s push into popular culture, Converse’s classic was seen on exactly the right people at the right time. Kurt Cobain was regularly snapped in One Stars, and Guy Mariano was captured in the One Star during his section in ‘Mouse’, Spike Jonze’s legendary 1996 skate video.

In 2017, the One Star returns for a third run on shelves across the world. At a time when flannel, band print tees and Cobain-inspired sunglasses are what’s poppin, it seems Converse’s timing is once again impeccable.

The 2017 iteration of the One Star sits the classic suede upper on the ever-reliable vulcanized rubber sole, bringing the iconic ‘70s aesthetics into the new era. The shoe that started in basketball 46 years ago and returned as a staple of skate in the ‘90s is back. It’s up to us to determine what the One Star’s impact on pop culture will be this time around.

Created in partnership with Converse to celebrate the release of the One Star, available now at Converse


Here’s why the Converse All Stars are the world’s most popular sneaker

The Converse All Stars has been an all-star slayer since 1917.

Can you recall the first time you wore a pair of All Star sneakers? It felt amazing, right? Like you had joined some kind of cool gang, and I’m sure you still get the same feeling every time you wear them. When it comes to these sneakers, the older they are, the more we fall in love them.

Converse All Stars is possibly the one sneaker that makes everyone feel bomb; from Beyonce to the guy at Joburg’s hip spot Great Dane, to the guy at SAFW or the Commerce student at UCT.

So what has made All-Star the most popular sneaker since the 1900s?

Luke Ruiters in The GQ fashion department helps us understand why the sneaker is legendary.

Rich history

All Stars were made popular by American basketball player Charles ‘Chuck’ Taylor in 1923. That’s why the sneakers are often referred to as Converse Chuck Taylors. Taylor was sponsored by the Converse Company, called The Converse All Stars. From then, the sneaker’s popularity grew and became the go-to shoe for many basketball players. After that, the shoe moved on to be worn by soldiers and Olympic athletes.

All Stars are iconic

Not many sneakers have the ability to stay relevant over the years. Fashion trends have changed over the years, but the Converse sneaker has remained consistent; and in doing so has reached ‘icon-status’. ‘The Converse brand is iconic; the design style is simple yet classic,’ Luke explains.


Whether you are going to the market, on holiday, at work, or getting married; you can wear a pair of Converse sneakers. Their versatility eases stress for people who don’t enjoy carrying a lot of clothes when they travel. You can just pack them, then mix and match them with different looks.


In terms of wear and tear, most of us who own All Star sneakers will agree that they are one of the strongest shoes around. We think it mostly has to do with that rubber sole. In fact, for some of us, an All Star sneaker we got as a teenager outlives us as our shoe size changes.

Wardrobe staple

‘The Converse All Star is an essential wardrobe staple , along with your plain white t-shirt and light washed denim,’ Luke explains. The sneaker is a fashion staple and it doesn’t seem like it will be changing anytime soon.

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Deliver To

Essential for any wardrobe, Converse All Star brings instant style to every outfit for any occasion. Designed back in the early 1900’s and remaining one of the most sought-after styles since, the All Star collection proves to be a timeless classic suited to every gender, age and style. Coming with many silhouettes, features, styles and colourways, styling up with a Converse sneak is never a wrong decision.

Chuck Taylor All Star

Inspired by the American basketball player Chuck Taylor, this sneak was designed with optimised flexibility to be a high performance shoe for basketball players. The latest edition released in 2015 incorporates the latest technologies for a more contemporary and improved design, taking it for a court classic to a street essential!

Converse All Star Ox

Debuting in ’55, Converse switched up their classic design with a low-cut version of the All Star dubbed the Oxford! Bringing a more casual vibe to the kicks, they were eventually renamed All Star Ox. Designed for everyday wear, the Ox is ideal for smartening up your off-duty wear, or bringing a street pop to a formal ‘fit.

Converse All Star Leather

Make your favourite footwear last longer with the Converse All Star Leather kicks. Made with a premium leather upper, the shoe is highly durable and remains the perfect choice throughout all seasons. Available in both High top and ox cuts, the All Star Leather steps away from the classic canvas upper to bring a premium edge to every occasion.

Converse All Star Ox Sparkle

The iconic kicks get a glitzy makeover with the All Star Ox Sparkle. Coming exclusively for kids, glam up your mini me for a look nobody can get enough of! Featuring synthetic uppers, the Sparkle kicks provide a glitter effect for a magical, standout look.



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