Whatever Happened To Dr Martens Fisherman Sandals From The '90s In All Their Grungy Glory?
Were your early years on this earth spent roaming the country wilderness... were your relatives fully signed members of the humble camping holiday... did your grandad just like sandals... a lot? There are many ways the Dr Martens fisherman sandals may have cushion soled-ly hopped into your life, but the sad thing that many people struggle to remember is why they ever left. Brought up in the flat, sugar-beet scented Norfolk countryside, affectionately known as "The Wash" or "Tra-er Land," this functional, foot-hugging footwear was a veritable demi-god back in the days of yore (otherwise known as the '90s).
From mine workers to goths to punk rockers, the Dr. Marten boot was the comfy yet oh-so-cool choice made by men and women alike since its introduction in 1960 — so enduringly popular, a limited edition Adventure Time Dr. Martens boot was recently released. But sadly for its sibling, the fisherman sandal, its vibe has always been more sensible shoe than style success... except in the '90s.
Walking down the (mud-coated, pot-holed) street, I'd pass old and young alike with their cloppers clod in the famous dark brown snuffed-leather sandals. The ones your grandad bought you. The ones you naively wore to your best friend's birthday party, then hung your head in shame as you spotted their Spice Girls tracksuit and stretchy flatform creepers. The ones that regularly left you with tomato-red toes and zebra-striped feet when you forgot to apply sunscreen. NOW YOU REMEMBER.
Dr. Marten Open Toe Brown Leather Fisherman Sandals, $36, etsy.com
At the grand age of eight, I was the proud owner of a beautiful lilac pair of fisherman sandals, with yellow flowers that danced along the leather straps and along to the buckle. They were bright, they were beautiful, and I was totally smitten... that is, until it came to actually wearing them.
You see, my sartorial silliness started at a very early age. I'd become enamored with the arguably evil sandals on a birthday shopping trip, and, determined to make them mine, lied at the crucial question of DID THEY FIT. As a result, my treacherous sandals left my feet with deep red grooves, and blisters the size of Belgium. I wore them diligently for a couple of weeks and then gave up the ghost, confining them defeatedly to the back of the shoe rack.
Dr. Martens Brown Leather Strappy Chunky Fisherman Sandals, $34, etsy.com
Now, my friend's dad still proudly dons a pair of Dr. Martens fisherman sandals. And it was on an unassuming Sunday afternoon as he sat wearing them, that I realized my sandals' ultimate treachery... saw through adult eyes their lack of renowned Dr. Martens' air-cushioned sole; their lack of slip-resistant tread; their suede-like, oil-deficient surface. My fisherman sandals were nothing but cheap knock offs.
And so I'm left wanting to try the real thing out... for the sake of the '90s trend, and all. Thank goodness for thrift-based retailers!