Thursday, February 5, 2009

AHNU: ENGINEERED FOOTWEAR FOR ON AND OFF THE TRAIL Fall 2009






CROSSOVER APPEAL IN PEDS FOR A BALANCED LIFE

OUTDOOR RETAILER MARKET SALT LAKE CITY PALACE, UTAH

Words, Images Judith Ecochard and from Ahnu’s Facebook Page

It’s funny…residing in a fashion forward urban metropolis on weekdays. Some of us do teeter around in heels part of the time, all the time (and look rather fetching Ha HA)…but as a city of FAST walkers, Big Apple dwellers ALSO demand comfort, support and performance in their shoes. Urban hikers if you will…so tourists, stop clogging up the sidewalks.

But we digress.

YES----Kickers that work in multi-environments to match up with our multi tasking, crackBerry lives are a must.

Cause once you’ve been to ‘the other side’---meaning wearing a great looking and fitting shoe that doesn’t make you want to rip them off at the end of our day, you’re hooked.

We were flooded with our brain cells all colliding after previewing the AHNU lineup of women’s and men’s shoes and boots.

Based in California...and now owned by Deckers…Ahnu is a brand with an outdoor fitness vibe. The company is rightfully proud of its “Neutral Positioning System Philosophy” that hits the list of desirables…cushioning, stability, traction grip, comfort, durability…in different doses- depending on the activity.

WHAT WE SAW:

The new Montclair boot in an “in” quilted preppy plaid pattern has garnered lots of print. We like the ease of slipping on a warm, fleece lined boot with a big zip we can operate with our gloves on. Its waterproof, has a compression molded EVA midsole, arch support…and a super thick rubber “cross directional” outer sole that grips. ($130).











Other popular options that retailers were ordering include:













Terra Linda trail runner, a cross train running shoe ($100) created for women on a women’s specific last, and the Mary J style Kick and Ginny.










And for men, the Firetrail XTR, a cross terrain running shoe… and the Reyes styles were getting the nod.

But we actually thought the handsome Drake model has a lot of cross over appeal---especially for office dwellers and travelers who want one shoe that does it all. We wonder if this item will get shelved in the "right" retail environment...
















The guys we hang with do not suffer for beauty...but care more than we thought they would...about what goes on their feet.




WHAT ELSE WE LOVE:
AHNU is a socially responsible company…its factory “sets the gold standard for labor practices…with a SA8000 Certification.” The company uses recycle please minimalist packaging, sustainable materials (hemp, charred bamboo)…and founder Jim Van Dine has even lectured at Stanford U on the entrepreneurial and sustainable biz slice of things.

RETAIL/INFO” Zappos and REI carry the line. For more store locations and/or to buy online-
AHNU FOOTWEAR