Complex | Cut & Show

Red Wing Shoe Co: Living & Breathing Footwear & Leather | Cut & Show

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Dave Hill:

I think as societies, including ours, continue to learn, evolve and be inspired by authenticity, people looking for footwear, they want something that's real. I think reinforcing values about hard work and maybe we do need to go back to the basics.

Red Wing Shoe Company, it's family owned.

And when you come here, you're working with people that live and breathe footwear and leather. Daryl G. Mark: Well, daily you'llreceive blue from Twin City Tanning Company and blue is chrome-tanned leather, which is the finest base tannage for footwear.

We're doing the leathers that have

the aesthetics and also have the enduring qualities. Dave Hill: We make ourown leathers. All of those things that are signature components, our DNA, the triple stitching, the heavy welting, and the fact that we're still doing it here is remarkable. So that seems to resonate with people.

It was not uncommon when I

was growing up in the leather business, so to speak, to have four generations of families that worked there. That's the beauty of it, the same hands are always working with the product. That work ethic that comes through, you've got a tremendous amount of loyalty and that longevity is...I think that's part of the secret.

The image of a tough worker,

whether it's male or female, we enhance that. Because those people that do those kinds of jobs where you're doing physical labor and/or things that require strenuous activity or arduous conditions, or whatever, I think those people expect a product that's going to withstand that. And by the same token, our heritage is that we make all of our stuff with durable, really gutsy, high performance leathers. I think they're symbiotic, they feed off of each other.

The signature details that

we have with our triple stitching, with the weight of the leathers, it's almost like you're building a house. You have to have a strong foundation and, literally, the foundation is your out-sole. We won't ever get away from that because, that's one of those components that, you build a good house, you put a nice siding on it or you landscape the trees, it's got to do a lot of things to make people happy in their, in their work environment but they also want them to look good. SPEAKER: These are just afew of the many good reasons why men who work on their feet all day buy Red Wings. Add them all up and it comes down to just one thing - with Red Wings you get what you pay for and then some.

A visit to Red Wing's factory located in the Mississippi Valley to take an in-depth look within the company. From the initial leather inspection to the final quality control phase, an observation and report of the secrets behind Red Wing's 100-plus years in the game.

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