Circa Skate Shoe Fabric and Sole Innovations



Circa (more accurately C1rca) have been operational since 1999, when they convinced Pro-Skater Chad Muska to help develop a landmark in shoe design: the CM901.


Their philosophy has always been summed up by the phrase 'committed to skateboarding' and the current team includes Ryan Gallant, Emmanuel Guzman and Tony Tave among others.
They have three distinct sections to their skate shoe business;

Mainline- the vast majority of shoes come under this category and has a large amount of lifestyle as well as core skate shoes.

Combat- This is the core skateboard shoe collection, and the shoes been designed from the ground up to reflect skateboarders exact needs.

Select- Here Circa allow their designers to have more expression, and the fabrics and construction of the shoes reflects this.

The 99 slim is a great example of Circa's select collection; it shows the heritage of an old skool high top, but fires into the modern age with a super-lightweight EVA midsole that is much lighter than it's close relative, the 99 Vulc. As well as this, the slim exhibits the features that make it very much a part of the 'select collection'. A full action leather upper, and fresh styling that make it extremely popular in other action sports cultures such as surfing, lifestyle fashion, bmx and snowboarding.

Circa continue to push the boundaries of the development of skate shoes with the help of their pro team. Ryan Gallant, the 28 year old California native has been skating for 20 years and contributed strongly to the development of his own model, the Gallant. It features micro-perforated suede to help with breathability and comfort, as well as being a very snug fit. It is Vulcanised too, a feature that has become more and more popular in shoes over the last 10 years, possibly due to the resurgence of Converse.

The term 'Vulcanised' simply refers to a vulcanised rubber sole, that generally sits 1.5cm from the base of the sole and continues around the diameter of the shoe. It is very hard wearing, and seems to last well in board sports even with the use of abrasive skateboard griptape and spiked bmx pedals.

'Fusiongrip'TM; was developed as a highly grippy rubber compound and tread pattern to complement many of Circa's collection, especially the core range. A good example of a 'Fusiongrip'TM shoe is the Heat Low, which also has a cupsole constructed sole. This sole is thicker and more cushioned than most Vulc shoes, and some skateboarders prefer it, due to the high impact landings they experience. Bruised heels aren't cool.

Circa have also been deliberately different in Fabric choices than their closest rivals, Etnies and Vans. The choice of plaid in mainline skate shoes was implemented by Circa at the outset of its popularity, allowing them to capitalise on a relatively new trend with lower competition.

They have also experimented with high quality leather in differing colourways, as well as triple velcro (the Lopez) and various incarnations of suede.

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