📚The Rise of Salomon
Today Salomon shoes are on every fashion and streetwear blog, but it all started in the 1950s when it was a small skiing workshop in the middle of the French alps.
Georges Salomon first opened the doors to his metal workshop in 1947. Based in the lake-side French Alpine town of Annecy, upon opening his doors he began crafting saw blades. World War Two had just finished and the push back of normal way of life was in full swing, meaning tourists were coming in thick and fast. So perhaps it was no surprise that they turned their metalworking into the fast developing sport of skiing.
In the 1950s minor falls in skiing often resulted in broken ankles or sometimes even worse, but Salomon provided two solutions. Initially advertised as ‘Your Guardian Angel’; the first solution was ‘skade binding’ and the second was a system called ‘Le Lift’. These new mechanics of your ski boot in 1955 allowed your bindings to release when excessive force was applied to the front of the boot. This allowed your boot to disconnect to your skis, saving you from further injury.
This revolutionary design rocketed the company into success, by 1972 Salomon had become the world’s number one ski binding with over 1 million units sold per year.
After being bought and sold by Adidas to eventually end up in the hands of Amer sports, the brand has saw new direction. Since the takeover in 2005; alongside ski mountaineering, hiking and snowboarding footwear, apparel and equipment, Salomon’s trail runners have become a huge focus.
The flag ship XT-6, XT-5, XT-4 and XT-Wings have made huge waves in the fashion world, and Salomon see it as huge potential for growth for the company.
Salomon’s release schedule is unique, it releases 25 advanced styles per season. Salomon’s advanced style could be compared to Carhartt’s WIP, it’s a mixture of colour ways with each style of XT. Notably Carhartt and Salomon have just done a collab- read here
Salomon’s advanced style first saw hit in popularity after its collaboration with Parisian boutique The Broken Arm. They sought to create a product that tweaked a popular alpine boot to better suit urban aesthetics.
“After a few tries, they not only got (the Snowcross) into the boutique but also got to know Julien Traverse, who was running Salomon’s Lifestyle program then, despite the low profile of the program at the time. They created a Snowcross like they wanted to, in an exclusive colourway. It was a big hit. That’s when I became aware of Salomon in the world of sneaker fashion. The project became a high-impact one: Salomon had started something new. I started in October 2016, and we launched projects with The Broken Arm and Boris Bidjan. I hit the ground running and Salomon let me manage these projects to the end.” Jean-Philippe Lalonde
The recent rejuvenation of the brand has allowed Salomon to hit high fashion. Whilst they’re modern, practical shoes there’s a intentional/unintentional fashion-istic feel good about the shoes which is also obscure and I guess unconventional. It’s a swing for the symbol of the high tech, which could be why they’re being swiped up by retailers.
Check the latest picks from Salomon here