As a non-smoker, I don’t have a craving to pull out a ‘gasper’ the moment I hear, see, smell or read the word tobacco. What I’m reminded of is Homer Simpson as a farmer and that through some fantastic crossbreeding of tobacco, gummy bears and tomato seeds (and a little help from some nuclear waste) he grows what he calls ‘tomacco’. As a result, he sends his cattle into addiction-fuelled attacks in search of the last tomacco plant. Genius.
Instead of reaching for a pack of Laramies, take a look at Up There’s latest collaboration and delivery: an exclusive, freshly made Yuketen lace up in tobacco leather.
Under designer Yuki Matsuda, Yuketen pays homage to American craft and traditions. The team seeks out footwear and luggage from remote parts of the country like the Appalachians and Sierras, taking you on a treasure hunt of sorts. Since 1985, Yuketen has slowly but surely become the go-to maker of shoes and luggage, establishing itself as the perfect example of frontier America’s rugged and refined past.
These are as on the money as you can get right now. Exclusive to Up There in Melbourne (but available at their online store for those of us up in Sydney), these are shoes cut a little higher for some winter protection. But this being Australia, if it gets warmer you’ll be ok too. It’s enough to protect you but not inhibit you. Handmade in the USA to fastidiously controlled standards, they’re replete with the smooth, mild finish you’ve come to expect from Yuketen and Up There.
Available in extremely limited numbers, Yuketen’s Forest Ranger, in course grain leather, continues the tradition and craftsman ethos of the brand. Get them while they last.