DOWN TO EARTH
The latest addition to Timberland’s Earthkeepers line, the hardwearing plain-toe boot has a simple and unembellished profile that cleans up nicely for urban wear. Derived from leather from a Silver-rated tannery, the waterproof shoe features a 100 percent recycled PET lining made from plastic bottles, 100 percent recycled PET laces, and a Green Rubber lug outsole made from 42 percent recycled rubber.
THE HIGH LINE
Tretorn’s Highlander boot strikes the perfect balance between a rough-and-ready pac boot, a stylish sneaker, and a moc-toe boat shoe. The boot’s sturdy eyelets and contrasting laces give it a shot of camper chic, while a 100 percent post-industrial recycled mesh liner keeps toes toasty. The Highlander also features an Eco Ortholite insole made from non-food-source bio oil.
When Rogues Gallery designer Alex Carleton took the helm of L.L. Bean’s new “Signature” line in 2010, he set to work updating the brand’s time-tested designs with modern cuts and new materials. Hand-stitched in Maine, the line’s rebooted Maine hunting shoe is one of the collection’s key pieces, pairing a waterproof rubber Bean boot sole with a durable waxed-canvas upper that goes light on the leather, offering lightweight protection from nature’s worst.
Handcrafted in Africa, Oliberté’s line of ethically made footwear comprises domestically sourced vegetable-tanned leather from free-range, hormone-free livestock. Its season-less Adibo desert boot, fitted with a recycled-crepe-rubber outsole, pairs a navy suede upper with a brilliant blue lace to brighten up the dreariest fall day.
Vegan activist and blogger Joshua Katcher of The Discerning Brute teamed up with Novocas to roll out a capsule collection of leather-free boots that marry high-quality materials with edgy designs. Available for pre-order at Katcher’s new store, Brave GentleMan, the Defender is fairly made in Portugal from 100 percent animal-free materials.
Rain boots are kind of silly when you think about them. Why purchase monofunctional footwear you only wear for a small portion of the year? Swims galoshes offer a versatile alternative to full-fledged wellies. Simply slide the rubber slipper—available in city-friendly gray, brown, and black or splashier strokes of color—over an existing shoe and you’ll never have to deal with soggy toes again.
TO CURE WHAT AILS YOU
Dr. Marten’s iconic eight-eye boot gets the vegan treatment without impugning on the good doctor’s reputation for quality and excellence. The shoe apes its conventional cousin to every last detail, from the Goodyear-welted faux-leather upper that’s sewn—not glued—to the air-cushioned sole, to the distinctive heel loop that proclaims its provenance.
A striking hybrid of a Chelsea boot and a wingtip Oxford, the Brogue Chelsea by Vegetarian Shoes delivers breathable, water-resistant comfort in a cruelty-free package. Fairly made in the United Kingdom, the shoe features a thinner version of the shoemaker’s grippy Airseal sole, which gives it a dressier profile without sacrificing any of the traction.
If you’re planning on puddle-jumping through fall, you can’t go wrong with a true original endorsed by the Queen of England herself. Hunter makes its combat-style Bormio on the same orthopedic last as its basic Wellington, offering the same vulcanized-rubber construction, quick-dry nylon-knit lining, and cushioned sponge insole that you and Her Majesty know and love.
TAKE A HIKE
A Portland-made hiking boot with plenty of panache, Danner’s Light II offers a full-grain leather upper, handcrafted stitch-down construction, and a lightweight Vibram Kletterlift outsole for shock absorption and stability. A waterproof Goretex liner keeps feet dry and comfy, no matter what the weather forecasts say.
Primed for a suit or a pair of slacks, the Emmett boot by Novacas is an animal-free multitasker with style for miles. It’s ethically made in Portugal and derived from a PVC-free polyurethane microfiber that stretches, breathes, and ages just like leather.
Originally made in the U.S.A., this deadstock 11-eye combat boot is in mint condition and ready to tackle whatever Ma Nature throws at you. The oiled-leather upper provides industrial-strength oil resistance, and a side zipper makes it easy to pull on and off in a jiffy.
This early 1980s leather work boot has never been worn, and it has the tags—all three of them—to prove it. Featuring brass grommet-and-hook lacing, heavy-duty cord laces, a padded ankle cuff, and a stitched rubber lug sole, this deadstock gem has waited in the wings long enough. Another upside? It was made in the good ol’ U.S. of A.