Hoppy feet: the nostalgic return of frog-faced wellies - The Guardian

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What has 2 eyes, greenish skin, and kept your feet adust erstwhile you were a child? Anyone calved successful the 1980s volition callback that whenever the heavens opened, disconnected came the Dunlops and retired came a brace of anthropomorphised, amphibious wellington boots. Now, astir forty years later, they’re back.

Made by Wellipets, a British marque that launched successful 1983 and until precocious had closed down, this period they were the speech of Milan manner week erstwhile models successful the JW Anderson amusement glided down the catwalk successful shrunken pants, leather trenches and frog-faced mules made by the Wellipets squad successful Milan. The “crogs” – arsenic 1 manner insider called them – came successful blue, yellowish oregon accepted batrachian green.

A exemplary wears ‘crogs’ astatine JW Anderson’s autumn/winter show.
A exemplary wears ‘crogs’ astatine JW Anderson’s autumn/winter amusement successful Milan. Photograph: JW Anderson

According to a spokesperson for Wellipets, Anderson approached them successful the summer, with the marque giving the Northern Irish decorator “full originative freedom”, they said. “Nostalgia and the recognisability of our wellingtons are a portion [of their revival] but adjacent if you haven’t worn them before, they inactive evoke a uncommon feeling”.

The decorator said helium owned a brace of wellies arsenic a child. Motivated excessively by nostalgia, the boots tapped into his “homely and puerility memories”, helium said successful a statement. The amphibian-styled clogs besides felt similar a bully acceptable successful a amusement that challenged sex norms. As immoderate amateur biologist volition know, frogs tin beryllium intersex.

Also fond of the archetypal frog boots successful their puerility were princes Harry and William, AKA the heir and the spare, who successful the precocious 1980s were regularly pictured successful the tabloids wearing them astatine polo matches. Wellipets declined to wade into the royal fray surrounding Harry’s caller memoir, though Anderson referred to this epoch arsenic “better times” for the princes successful a speech with i-D magazine.

JW Anderson men’s autumn/winter 2023.
Motivated by nostalgia … JW Anderson’s autumn/winter show. Photograph: JW Anderson

Anderson, who oversees his namesake marque arsenic good arsenic Loewe, has go a dab manus astatine turning daft jokes into precocious fashion. Over the past fewer seasons, helium has provided Carrie Bradshaw with a pigeon clutch bag made from resin, covered shoes with deflated reddish balloons from a children’s enactment and turned a colourful cardigan worn by Harry Styles into a knitting sensation connected TikTok.

Despite champion efforts by much ceremonial designers, comfy lace-free shoes were everyplace successful Milan, arsenic good arsenic the catwalk. From level Uggs to clog-type shoes astatine Charles Jeffrey Loverboy and Crocs and socks connected the beforehand row. According to a study by The Sole Supplier, Crocs saw a 121% summation successful searches connected Google Trends this twelvemonth alone, portion Uggs person seen the biggest accrued successful income (figures volition beryllium released successful the spring) contempt expanding their prices to match.

While the frog boots are lone disposable successful children’s sizes, the website suggests sizes 4-8 volition deed shelves successful the spring, with a men’s scope to follow. For those hoping to get a caput start, determination are respective “rare vintage Wellipets” going connected eBay for astir £50 a pair.

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