AT A GLANCE
PRICE: Approx. $269 / €285 / £269
PROVENANCE: USA
MATERIALS: Leather Upper / Vibram® rubber outsole.

The Chippewa Originals Collection Attacks the Competition Head On

There is something about tan leather and denim that works seamlessly, and I love workwear inspired boots. So, the 1901M30 Homestead in Copper Caprice full grain leather was a natural choice when Chippewa offered me to test-wear a pair of their Original collection boots.

With the recently introduced sub-brand, Chippewa sets out to combine timeless silhouettes with modern style while keeping the company’s rich tradition alive. To quote the press blurb the Original collection is, “a blend of modern durability found in contemporary outdoor products combined with the heritage and authenticity of American craftsmanship and work ethic. The collection is an assembly of vintage-inspired footwear for individuals who appreciate classic boots with a distinctive identity.”

All right, let me tell you how that materialises in the Chippewa Homestead.

Breaking In the Homestead Without a Sweat (or Blisters)

As you’d expect from any heritage range, craftsmanship is key; all Original collection boots are Goodyear welted and hand crafted in the USA from American hides. The light tan full grain leather of the Homesteads has a pleasingly soft texture to it. Unlike my Red Wing Iron Rangers (8113), the Homesteads were comfortable straight out the box, requiring only minimal breaking in. No blisters, I’m pleased to report.

The cushioned insole undoubtedly helps, the heel being maple leather, the rest something called texon. As befits what is technically a work boot, there is a reinforcing steel shank. Yet, the boots do not feel too clunky. After a few months of regular wear the boots are now molded perfectly to my feet.

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NEW UTILITY - CHIPPEWA HOMESTEAD BOOT

Classic, Stylish, and Functional Details

The detailing is stylish too – the unbleached cotton stitching across the toe-cap and round the outsole looks great. The brass speed hooks at the top of the boots mean they’re easy to get your feet in and out of. (Important in Danish homes where mistakenly keeping one’s shoes on indoors can result in much social awkwardness.) The sizing comes up a little large, but I prefer to wear thick socks with my boots. The Vibram V-Bar sole does have some grip; whether that’s up to the rigors of a Scandinavian winter remains to be seen, though I’m sure they’ll be perfect around town.

The Homestead Has Your Back

The Chippewa Homestead might wear its heritage on its sleeve, however, whilst the construction is undoubtedly robust, the boots are not overly heavy. So, if you’re looking for a quality light winter boot the Homestead could be right for you. In addition to style, comfort is a key thing for me – and these babies are so comfortable I’m sure they’ll be keeping my feet nice and toasty throughout the winter.

If tan leather is not quite to your taste, the Homestead is also available in several other finishes. Check them out here.

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