Clark’s Originals, The Iconic Shoe That Has Been A Part Of Jamaica's Urban Fashion Since The Early 90’s

The biggest supporters of Clarks Originals is none other than the island of Jamaica, Clark’s was introduced in Jamaica in the 1920s and the impact of styles such as the Desert Boot, Wallabee and Desert Trek on the island . How and why, you will know by reading our article.

From the origins of streetwear to the Rude Boys movement, through the appropriation by the community, to end with the recognition of the brand itself. A great story is told.


Powerful and unique, the Jamaican culture tells the story of a cosmopolitan country. This small Caribbean island is firstly known for having been the birth place of the Rasta movement, and has radiated through its athletic performances in track and field. But the country has above all spread its culture through its sounds. From rocksteady to ska, reggae to dancehall, its musicians have invented and reinvented music to thrill the world.

 Its music, its streets, its Clarks and its culture have influenced many clothing styles that still color our urban landscapes today. An influence that many tend to forget. Indeed, streetwear did not wait for the New York B-boys to stroll our streets. Its culture and its codes are in fact the work of this West Indian melting pot. Still untouched and uninfluenced by the U.S., the Jamaicans were far from suspecting that they were going to mark the urban fashion with a style and a culture unique in its kind: The Rude Boys.


The Rude Boy's outfit is made of 4 main elements.

The Tam: Every good Rude Boy who respects himself wears a tam. Bob Marley contributed to its international reputation. The Tam, rastafar, rastacap or toppa, is a round cap that serves to maintain the dreadlocks.

The Ganzie: Worn by the Norwegian army in 1930, then democratized by the Americans with the "health vest", this mesh vest, nicknamed Ganzie, has become an essential piece of the rude boy. Especially in gangs like the famous Spanglers Posse. This marcel is worn under a shirt with only the collar buttoned.

The Bottom: Jeans or cigarette pants, the Rude Boy culture has no emblematic pants. All the subtlety resides in the way to wear it. Pulled up on one side only, decorated often with an open cotton belt, a single obligation to which a Rudy cannot derogate, it is the universal symbol of rebellion.

The Shoes: The most important piece, the one that has to stay shiny and new. If there is one element that must be remembered in this pack of the good Rude Boy, it is the shoes. But not just any shoes. In the ghetto, there is only one brand that has a word to say: Clarks Originals. Jamaicans are devoted to a real cult to this brand from England. Desert Boots or Wallabees, no matter the shape or color, once on his feet, a Rude Boy can face anything.


In Kingston, the Rude boys roam the city and use the Clarks as a sign of recognition. Synonymous with coolness, or badness attribute, the brand is worn by those who want to show where they come from, but with elegance. In fact, we invite you to read our article, full of good advice, to know how to wear Clarks shoes.

In the ghetto, it is first a marker of luxury but also of power. Some say that if you don't wear Clarks on your feet, you have nothing to say. All-terrain pairs, tough and flexible enough to run, the crepe sole has everything to take on the tough Jamaican terrain and suit the look-conscious Rudies.

The crepe sole is then an identity marker, so much so that its wearer risked custody. The Desert Trek model was immediately catalogued as "robber's shoes". In the opinion of the policemen, anyone who can afford such an expensive pair is necessarily a badman.


To thank the loyalty of its Jamaican consumers, the brand has accumulated several partnerships to support the population and works for the island's disadvantaged children. The label has set up a community partnership with Marverley Primary and Junior High School. It also works closely with Grammy Award winner Koffee on her non-profit organization "