Workboot Buzz: Dickies, Rocky, Timberland & More

New Beginnings
Dickies is in new hands. The work footwear, which had been licensed to Rocky Brands Inc., will now be produced and distributed by Cambridge, Ontario-based Kodiak Group Holdings, a wholly owned subsidiary of parent company Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Co. The new collection hits stores in January. According to Wes Smith, VP and GM of Kodiak Terra USA in Fort Worth, Texas, the brand will continue to offer core styles upgraded with new components such as D-rings instead of eyelets for added safety; removable memory foam footbeds; and moisture-wicking anti-abrasion linings. In addition to men’s work looks, the line also will include a series of slip-resistant styles for men and women targeting the food services industry. It will retail for $49 to $79 at safety retailers, family shoe stores and farm and ranch retailers.


Branching Out
Portland, Ore.-based Keen is bringing its unique silhouette to a new line of work and duty shoes for spring. Pre-launching with select styles this month, the Keen Utility collection is built around the brand’s asymmetric last for a roomier fit. The core Utility series includes steel and composite safety toes; TPU stability plates for enhanced flexibility in the forefoot and stability underfoot; slip- and oil-resistant outsoles; a moisture-management waterproof technology; and footbeds made from recycled polyurethane, cork and memory foam. Retail prices range from $115 to $185. Additionally, Keen is addressing the duty sector with the Service series of men’s and women’s clogs and oxfords, featuring oil- and slip-resistant outsoles, waterproof and stain-resistant leather uppers, and compression-molded EVA midsoles. That line will sell for $95 to $100.


On the Money
Timberland PRO is taking it light this spring with the launch of Helix, a collection of lightweight all-purpose workboots retailing from $130 to $160. The cement-construction boots feature the Stratham, N.H.-based brand’s proprietary PowerFit Comfort system, complete with a contoured polyurethane footbed for cushioning, anti-microbial lining and anti-fatigue technology to absorb shock. Included in the debut series is a 6-inch style with alloy safety toe, a 6-inch waterproof boot with safety toe and 6-inch soft-toe boot. The collection hits stores in February.


Tread on Me
Nelsonville, Ohio-based Rocky Brands Inc. is taking a new approach to slip resistance in its Michelin and Georgia brands. In keeping with Michelin’s tire heritage, the spring collection (at right) features new outsole treads. For example, the Star Tread pattern channels liquids away from the bottoms for the hospitality industry, while a high-angle directional tread with open edges easily releases debris and the bi-directional traction optimizes grip on indoor and outdoor terrains in heavy industrial settings. The line retails from $50 for the hospitality collection to $200 for the heavy industrial boots, and is available for immediate delivery. Separately, Georgia Boot has developed the Diamond Trax series with slip-resistant technology that improves with wear. And the sole’s lightweight structure adds comfort. Retailing from $125 to $165, the series is available in 6-inch and 8-inch steel- and soft-toe styles for December delivery. Additional features include waterproofing and electrical-hazard protection.

Protect & Serve
With the addition of a breathable internal membrane, Original S.W.A.T. of Stockton, Calif., has stepped up the features of its waterproof boots to meet standards for blood-borne pathogen resistance. The three-piece collection consists of a 9-inch tactical boot with composite shank; the Air M.T. side-zip boot insulated with 200-gram Thinsulate; and the WinX2 waterproof boot. Retailing from $80 to $110, the styles are available for immediate delivery.

Dirt Busters
Weinbrenner Shoe Co. of Merrill, Wis., has debuted Shoe In, a series of footwear coverings for indoor use. The lightweight, molded EVA looks are available in openand closed-toe versions that easily slide over all types of footwear to protect floors from tracked-in dirt. For personal protection, the bottoms feature slip-resistant rubber pads. A safety-toe style and closed-toe version were also designed to be worn over shoes for traction on ice, snow and mud. The line retails from $25 to $40 and is available for immediate delivery. Unisex sizes range from S to XL.

Main Menu
Hospitality and restaurant workers are the focus of Dr. Martens’ new Grip-Trax Service collection of slip-resistant footwear. The duty series echoes the brand’s style details, such as groove sidewalls and stitching, while the rubber outsoles have a tread pattern to help prevent slippage. Made from full-grain leather, the shoes are equipped with removable, cushioned insoles and moisture-wicking linings. Available for men and women, the line retails for $85 to $90 and will deliver in March.

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