How The Reebok Classic Started A Generation Of Classic Leather Styles
The 80s fitness boom saw the Bolton born sportswear brand cashing in on their all leather casual styles such as the original Reebok Classic Leather trainer.
When something has ‘classic’ in its name, its got to to be the best and that’s something we also take great pride in. The Reebok Classic Leather certainly had all the classic qualities when it was first released back in the early 80s and over the last 35 years has become one of the most respected and recognised Reebok shoes to ever be released. Some styles come and go whereas with the Classic, it never really went anyway. A popular trainer style throughout the 80s, the 90s and the noughties, the Classic has built a global following spanning over 3 decades for its simplicity and sporty good looks. Do Reebok trainers really get more classic than the Reebok Classic Leather itself? Probably not.
Above: You’ve Arrived. An original advert for the launch of the Reebok Classic Leather from 1983.
Born out of the 80s fitness revolution the Classic saw Reebok cashing in on this new gym going trend. Think Arnold Schwarzenegger in Conan The Barbarian or Sylvester Stallone in First Blood both from 1982. Their muscular physiques were like nothing people had ever seen before. Granted they were juiced up to the max and pumped full of Dianabol and testosterone but the average gym goer didn’t know that at the time. They simply wanted to look like them. The early 80s also saw the rise of a new breed of “money” with the city yuppies who were making more cash than they knew what to do with. Put the two together and you had a demand for fitness apparel and footwear like never before. This new breed of fitness fanatic no longer required a shoe that was built for one purpose. They needed a shoe that could be used in the gym for a workout, on the squash court and for the early morning run. This is where Reebok stepped in and put their ‘Classic’ mark on the trainer world for decades to come.
Above: The Reebok Classic Leather trainers in white/gum available now from 80s Casual Classics.
1979 saw Reebok introduce classic runner styles like the Aztec. Moving into the early 80s the sportswear game started to change with Reebok looking to focus more on the new fitness market. It was also where Reebok saw the gap for unisex gym styles whilst adidas and Nike for example were still focusing on predominantly male focused performance trainer technology. With all white leather styles the Reebok silhouettes from the 80s were the brands’ first ever lifestyle/casual styles to be introduced. Although originally introduced as a running shoe, Reebok knew exactly what they were doing with the Classic Leather which was first released in 1983. A game changer of the era the Reebok Classic Leather went with the tagline ‘You’ve Arrived’, a testament to the trainers’ lifestyle appeal. Don’t be fooled however by the more lifestyle approach from the Bolton born sportswear brand, the Classic was also great for running in and just about any other fitness activity you could think of at the time. The original marketing campaign for the shoe also went on to say, “It’s Luxurious, it’s rich, it’s soft, Reebok garment leather that feels like your’re walking on clouds”.
Above: The Reebok Classic Leather trainers in black/gum available now from 80s Casual Classics.
The Reebok Classic Leather is now introduced to 80s Casual Classics with all its original 80s fitness charm. The latest version of the original classic style features soft premium leather uppers, a grippy gum outsole for the ultimate underfoot stability, Union Jack branding to the sides and a padded ankle support for all day comfort. We’ve got the Classic Leather available in an assortment of colourways including classic white, black and vintage white/blue.
Above: The Reebok Classic Leather trainers in vintage white/navy available now from 80s Casual Classics.