Chelsea boots are strongly rooted in England’s boot making history, with the first pair being designed and made by J. Sparkes-Hall in the mid-19th century. The boot maker for Queen Victoria herself.
These close-fitting ankle high boots scream royalty and rebellion – being drizzled in rock culture in the 60s with bands such as the Rolling Stones adopting the footwear. Every man should own a sturdy pair of Chelsea boots. It’s a boot that demands to be respected and can be worn with both smartwear and casualwear.
The history of the Chelsea boots will take you all the way back to the Victorian period. Despite it’s Victorian roots, the boot could not have originated without Vulcanized rubber.
In 1839, both American-born Charles Goodyear and British-born Thomas Hancock invented the crucial material of which would allow for easy slip-on boots. Despite it be inconclusive as to who invented it first, they were allowed separate patents which would eventually lead to the beginning of the Chelsea boot.
12 years after it’s invention, J.Sparkes-Hall developed an elastic sided ankle boot using the same invention. He claimed; “She (Queen Victoria) walks in them daily and thus gives the strongest proof of the value she attaches to the invention.” After years of continuous designs and modifications, the Chelsea boot has become what we know and love today.
These are our pick of the 5 best Chelsea boots for men:
Goodwin Smith Bailey Mahogany
The Bailey Mahogany Chelsea Boots from Goodwin Smith will have you standing out from the crowd. They feature a hand-dyed leather upper, leather and textile lining and a herringbone detail elastic gusset. Goodwin Smith have been making shoes since 1928 and feature a range of Chelseas, Monkstraps and Derbys.
Russell & Bromley Beechwood Classic
The Beechwood Classic from Russell & Bromley comes in a rich black calf leather. Crafted in Tuscany from hand selected black calf leather, this style has been detailed with classic elastic inserts. A fine welt and narrowed toe ensures they’re sleek enough to pair with tailoring.
Common Projects Round-toe Suede
If you’re into your modern pop culture, then you’ll probably know Common Projects. Worn by Drake, the brand has a gorgeous range of Chelsea boots including these Round-toe suede in black. The sole and branding provide a great twist on the Chelsea boot with the rubber-crepe soles.
Cheaney Barnes III B
Team this pair of Cheaney Barnes Chelsea Boots with an oxford shirt and slim fit jeans for the perfect casual look. These boots are for more the casual style, creating a statement with their wilted brown rubber sole. Hand crafted in Northamptonshire, Joseph Cheaney & Sons create classic shoes with a history going back to 1886.
Alexandre Mattiusi Black Spazzolato
These Black Spazzolato Chelsea Boots from Alexandre Mattiusi embody that rock and roll culture. With the glossy style, large welt and leather sole, people will spot your strut from a mile away. ‘Made in Portugal’ with ‘love’ the boots are made from 100% cow leather.