Designer Sung Choi got the idea for Clae, his back-to-basics footwear label, while working at DC Shoes in the late 1990s. Choi realized that he wanted to strip away the trinkets and extraneous details adorning so many sneaker styles of that era, and bring about a more refined sensibility. The result was Clae and its concept of “athleisure.” Clae combined casual silhouettes and the supreme comfort of athletic shoes to create styles like white patent leather sneakers, canvas low-tops, and the Russell suede high-tops. Choi names Clae’s goods after Steve McQueen, Sonny Rollins, Jacques Cousteau, Romare Bearden, and other personalities he admires — adding a touch of history to your step.
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