Almost 100 years old, the Chuck Taylor All Star is in many ways the Coca-Cola of sneakers. Converse wanted to continue to innovate and deliver fresh purchasing options their customers. But it needed to feel organic and necessary, rather than corporate tinkering.
We knew the danger of alienating Converse’s core consumer with thoughtless tweaking, because Converse’s core consumer are creatives and artists, rockers and skateboarders, rebels and iconoclasts. That’s where a collaboration with The Sense Network came in; synonymous with Converse’s core consumers, they live at the edges of culture.
The Sense Network (including one particularly passionate chef), Converse Brand team and Product Design team worked collaboratively and iteratively to develop the new shoe. The brief was to change everything without changing anything; working through iterative loops the Chuck ll product was developed and messaging refined with each loop delivering feedback that was reviewed and informed the next round.
A reimagining of the classic Chuck design with a focus on improved comfort and increased build quality.
The shoe released to positive reviews, with the upgrades to comfort and durability being a focus of the praise:
“They’re not just worth the money—they’re a legitimate game-changer for fans of the sneaker everywhere“, GQ.
“Overall, these are a great addition to the Converse family of shoes, and will be a great addition to my collection“, Dress Code.
“If you like the original Converse All Stars but wish they were more comfortable or more durable, give the All Star IIs a try. If you prefer the flat-soled, floppy canvas version, stick with the originals. It’s a win-win“, Dappered.
Many of the changes incorporated into the Chuck II have followed through to the development of the ‘Converse Modern’.
It was one of the most fun projects of my career. Not because of the project itself. It was because of the world-class team I worked with who made it happen.
Chief Marketing Officer, Converse
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