Converse sneakers have been worn for over 100 years. Let’s take a look at the history of this brand and focus on the models that have been among the most popular for a long time. Let’s also talk about how to recognise original shoes from imitations. 


Converse sneakers in the 20th century 

A certain Maher Converse founded a factory in Malden, Massachusetts, in 1908 and named it the Converse Rubber Shoe Company. It focused on rubber soles for work shoes and later on women’s, men’s and kids’ shoes with rubber soles. The breakthrough came in 1917, when the famous Converse All Stars sneakers were created and made famous by the then basketball player Chuck Taylor, who participated in their sale as a trader even after his career ended. 

Therefore, the history of Converse sneakers began more than 100 years ago. They were popular among basketball players even in the following decades, but also among athletes or members of the US army. Although they stopped being predominant in basketball in the 1970s, when NBA players began using competing Adidas Superstar shoes, they remained widely popular. And not just with athletes. They were also worn by members of The Beatles or Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. For this reason, the sneakers became popular with young people. 


Converse in the socialist Czechoslovakia 

It’s also interesting to note that the Converse sneakers were also available in Czechoslovakia before 1989. Naturally, these weren’t genuine Converse sneakers. They were made in China and called Forward and Warrior. Still, they looked like the American basketball sneakers in some ways. They were mostly available in white, but occasionally in blue. They were popular in the CSSR in the 1970s and 1980s, not only for sports activities, but also for casual wear. Furthermore, it was definitely not a low-quality shoe. 

Converse sneakers in the new millennium 

The popularity of Converse sneakers did not change at the beginning of the third millennium. On the contrary. But there were major changes. Nike bought the brand in 2003. Men’s, women’s and kids’ shoes are still sold under the given brand, but you can also buy clothes in various colours, shapes and patterns. The merger of these two fashion world giants therefore expanded the product range, which means that people are also still interested in this brand’s products thanks to the further steps taken. 

Converse launched its Cons skateboarding programme in 2009, with ambassadors such as Kenny Anderson, Anthony Pappalardo, Nick Trapasso, Jason Jessee and Mike Anderson. The brand returned to professional basketball 10 years later with the All Star Pro BB combining the traditional Converse style with contemporary Nike technology. The first player to try the new product was Kelly Oubre Jr. A contract with other basketball players, including Natasha Cloud from WNBA, was signed later.

Popular Converse shoe models 

The Converse shoes are now available in a variety of designs, some of which are classic, others look a bit bizarre. Which models are the most popular? 

  • Converse All Stars – they were the first and are still popular today. Also known as Chuck Taylor All Stars, the shoes were popular among basketball players until the 1960s, but they have been more popular as retro style leisure shoes since the 1980s. They have recently returned to professional basketball with the Pro BB models. Converse All Stars have appeared in several hundreds of films, including Back to the Future and I, Robot.

  • Converse the Weapon – shoes that appeared in 1986 and were once again aimed at basketball. Made in two colour patterns, they match the colours of basketball team kits. They had a leather structure and strong padding for added comfort. Larry Bird and Magic Johnson were the first faces of this model. New versions such as The Loaded Weapon or The Weapon 86 were created later.

  • Converse Cons – shoes made exclusively for skateboarding. Made from durable material, they provide comfort (not only) when skateboarding. They are available in both low and high designs and suitable for either gender who profess skateboarding as their lifestyle. 


How to recognise fake Converse sneakers

Many shoes try to mimic Converse All Star sneakers. So we have some tips for you on how to successfully recognise an imitation, and to be sure that you wear originals on your feet.

  • It should have Converse All Star written on the tongue and at the heel.

  • Converse should be written on the inner insole, too. 

  • There is a logo in a circle in the ankle area, which is usually on both shoes.

  • The original can also be distinguished by its design. The edges of the shoes are completely straight and the sole must be rubber and solid.

  • Whether you buy Converse sneakers in a standard shop or from an online shop, they should be packed in an original box.