As one of the most iconic names in British footwear, Clarks have built a reputation for providing some of the most high quality and stylish shoes around. Each pair of Clarks shoes is designed with the brand’s reputation and heritage in mind, ensuring that they stand the test of time, just like the popular school shoes that seem to last far longer than any others.

Clarks Originals are a nod towards this heritage and maintain the classic look and feel while also ensuring that they’re every bit as practical and wearable today. To help you find out more about this fashionable and comfortable range of Clarks Originals for men, women and children, we’ve compiled this guide that answers all of the most frequently asked questions.

Who founded Clarks shoes?

The Clarks brand was founded in 1825 by Cyrus and James Clark, two brothers from Somerset who first made a slipper out of the off-cuts from rugs manufactured in Cyrus’ tannery.

Since the day when the first pair of Clarks shoes were made, the company has continued to reside in Somerset and the village of Street.

Although the manufacturing unit was moved overseas in 2005, C&J Clark – as they were originally named – still has its headquarters here along with the Shoe Museum which provides information on the family history, the development and growth of the Clarks brand and the evolution of the footwear manufacturing process.

Where are Clarks shoes manufactured?

Clarks shoes and desert boots are currently being manufactured in countries including Portugal, China, Vietnam and India; and have been since the company closed its final UK plant in Cumbria in 2006.

In July 2017, the company announced that they would be starting to make their shoes in the UK again with the opening of a new unit at its headquarters in Street.

It was announced that, while the range would continue to be sourced from overseas, around 300,000 pairs of Clarks desert boots would be made in Somerset.

Clarks – just a school shoes manufacturer?

It’s true that the Clarks brand has seen decades of success as a school shoes manufacturer, as they create robust, quality styles which go down well with kids and parents alike.

However, the Clarks Originals collection is packed with modern takes on iconic silhouettes such as the desert boot, which has an interesting and vibrant history. Designed in 1950 by Nathan Clark (the great-grandson of founder James Clark), they were inspired by ankle-high suede boots which were bought in Cairo and worn by Eighth Army soldiers in Asia.

Nathan Clark discovered this style while working as an officer in the Royal Army Service Corps and brought ideas home to create his own designs. The rest, as they say, is history.

Where are Clarks shoes most popular?

It goes without saying that a brand will often see the most popularity in its home country – in this case the UK.

On the other hand, thanks to Jamaican “rude boy” youths choosing to make Clarks desert boots part of their go-to style in the 1960s, the brand sees a huge amount of popularity in Jamaica to this day, according to Google Trends data.

Who knew?

How do I care for my Clarks Originals?

There are a number of ways in which you can care for your Clarks Originals, ranging from cleaners and protectors to restorers that will bring them back to their box-fresh look.

Premium shoe cleaners are ideal for removing dirt from all colours and fabrics, including suede and leather as well as synthetic materials. You’ll also find polishing sponges and protectors in the shoe care section at OFFICE; providing a layer of shine for your shoes, while also helping to prevent water from seeping through and causing damage or discomfort.

Should I put my Clarks Originals in the washing machine?

There are a lot of people who choose to put their shoes in the washing machine, rather than using the cleaners and protectors we just mentioned; but in the case of Clarks Originals, it’s probably best to avoid it.

The heat and spin could affect the material in the long-term so it’s safer to give them a wipe or to use tried and trusted cleaning products.

Are Clarks Originals true to size?

One of the things that set Clarks apart from other brands available on the high street is their sizing. If you remember buying Clarks shoes as a child, for your child or as an adult; then you might be aware of the emphasis that the brand places on finding the right size.

All Clarks shoes are designed to fit the same way, regardless of which style or material you choose; so once you know your size, you should be able to shop the brand confidently. To find yours however, we recommend heading to your local OFFICE store and getting fitted by one of our trained assistants.

Wearing ill-fitting shoes can be detrimental for your feet, so it is worth getting measured at least once a year, to ensure you are wearing the right size – even as an adult!

Where can I buy Clarks Originals?

At OFFICE, of course! We’ve got a wide range of Clarks Originals for men, women and children available, with styles ranging from the classic desert boots to field shoes, trainers, ankle boots and brogues. Check them out in the Clarks Originals store on our website, or pop into your nearest OFFICE store today.