Take that, trend-watchers: Ugg Australia’s now-classic boots in their comfy, cozy glory are still going strong after 35 years, having just celebrated their anniversary this month at all the company-owned stores.
The sort-of-clunky sheepskin boots have been declared “in” and they’ve been called “out” — many times over. They’ve been knocked off even more. But their loyal fans keep buying them.
“Have you ever tried one on? If you did, you’d know,” says Tacey Powers, national merchandise manager for Nordstrom. “They are part of the everyday wardrobe. You own a sneaker, you own a flip-flop, you own an Ugg.”
The original boot style is still the most popular, but Ugg has branched out to include more fashion-y silhouettes and loungewear. Home products such as blankets and decorative pillows will be offered this holiday season. Almost every item is touched, even if it’s hidden at the base of the heel, by the signature sheepskin lining.
“You have to be comfortable in Ugg. You have to feel good. Our tag line is, ‘Feels like nothing else.’ We want them to be the go-to pair in your closet for everything,” says Ugg Australia President Connie Rishwain. “We don’t want to be the pretty pair you never wear.”
The peak of Ugg’s pop-culture trendiness was in the early 2000s, when Hollywood starlets made them part of their uniform with short denim miniskirts. Never mind that they were cruising the sunny beaches of Malibu, Calif.
Now it’s evolved into a “Goldie-Hawn-in-Aspen look,” says Adam Glassman, creative director at O, The Oprah Magazine, and that’s how you should wear them: with leggings and a long sweater, or jeans and a fur-trimmed parka. Or like you just don’t care.