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Converse All Star - From Basketball to Fashion

When Converse Rubber Corporation started in 1908 no one thought that 100 years later they would be famous for their high fashion shoes.

The company that started in Massachusetts was first selling galoshes and work related shoes. Two years later the company was selling 4000 pairs of shoes every day. To increase their profit and to have jobs year round they started to make athletic shoes.

In 1917 they started to sell the All Star basketball shoe, made of rubber and canvas. The shoe, from the beginning, was not that popular. But one person who liked them was Charles H. Taylor. He thought it was a perfect basketball shoe and loved them. At that time he was a 17 year old high school student and played basketball for the Akron Firestones. He wanted to be a famous basketball player but ended up as a salesman for Converse All Star.

Taylor started to work at Converse in 1921 and in 1932 he got his own model called Chuck Taylor. He traveled around the US and promoted the shoe. The work he did for Converse was really good marketing and he was a perfect salesman. In 1957 the low cut model came and at the same time people started to wear sneakers even more than before. The generation that was in school during that time didn't want to stop using them and started to wear them to work and even adults started to wear sneakers. At that time converse had 80% of shares in the sneaker industry. Between 1970 and 1980 a lot of rock band members started to wear the shoes. Some of them were AC/DC, Ramones and Nirvana. Tommy Ramone once said "It was punky and snotty to wear sneakers instead of shoes. Punky and Snotty was very important for the Ramones."

The shoe can also be seen in a lot of movies as Grease, Rocky, West side story and Happy Days.

Even if the brand was famous and the sneakers were more popular than ever the company had a hard time during 1970 and the ownership changed several times. The competition was hard and one of their biggest competitors was Nike. Many years later Nike actually bought the company and today Nike is the owner of the brand. But Chuck TaylorA�s shoe still remain and it hasn't been changed since 1949. The shoe that from the beginning was a basketball shoe for men to use when playing basketball is today a high fashion shoe for both men and women. They are distributed all over the world and you can even find them on the catwalk and the celebrities' red carpet. What people like most about them is that you can wear them with all types of clothes and they are comfortable. By the turn of the 21st century over 750 million pairs had been sold.