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History of the boot

  1. #1

    History of the boot

    Lately I've spent a lot of time researching the infamous Fett boot. I'm currently pursuing several leads that seem to have great potential given style and construction cues noted in reference photographs.The abrupt end of one of these leads last week has me a bit frustrated, but also glad I can check one more potential source off my list, this lead entailed going through every catalog, production note, and order for this company during the 1970's. Needless to say, they were very generous with their efforts to help me.Last weeks dead end is catalyst for this post. I'd like anyone here with any information regarding the boot to post it here, so that we might:a. All learn from it, andb. Not spin our wheels repeating each others research.Thanks in advance. Looking forward to what you all have to say!-Jared

  2. #2

    Re: History of the boot

    Okay then, simmer down everyone.

    Let me put forth some suggestions as to why I think the boot is def a found part. I know a few of you have talked to the original prop builders (or at least, have for the helmet), so I would love to hear your thoughts.

    First off, let's talk about what I'm going to call the 'ear flaps'. The parts on either side of the boot that probably stretch a bit. Two things pop-out at me about this section, first... the fabric weave changes directions and goes horizontal at the top. This is done on some of the chelsea boots to make them more durable, and so you don't get that stretched-out 'baconing' effect at the top. Also, this section is double stitched around the edges for durability.

    These two points stand out at me as 'production shoe' and not 'quick prop'. These details, as well as the back-heel flap (to make it easier to pull on) have no need to be there in a non-production prop.

    The last detail that I would suggest is indicative of a production item and not a prop, is the toe. This boot as a very clean, square toe. Now, I'm no shoe/boot expert, but EVERYONE I've spoken too says Chelsea boots and notoriously difficult to make... and make well. Why would the prop builders choose a difficult boot style to produce when (a) no one will ever notice, and (b) there are MANY chelsea's easily available?

    Below are images of (obviously) the fett boot, highlighting the points I'm talking about, and vintage (70's I believe) chelsea showing the same details. What do you guys think??
    bootsuggestions-jpgfchels-jpg

  3. #3
    WTFett's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    I tried looking at dive boots to see if I could find something resembling the Fett boot since that's what it looks like to me. The actual boot material doesn't look like leather which is why I thought it wasn't a Chelsea, but I haven't found anything with the right sole either.

  4. #4

    Re: History of the boot

    WTFett, I chased down the Royal Navy Divers boot lead, by contacting a specialist/professor at The Defence Academy of the UK. He, in turn, was kind enough to contact a 'MCD Officer' who assured him it was NOT a RN Divers boot.

    If that helps.

    The sole, I wouldn't focus on that too much. Resoling isn't as difficult, and since a lot of Chelsea's had boot heals, they may have resoled, just to make it easier for the actor.

    As for the material... IDK, waxed cotten? Perhaps something similar to denim?

  5. #5
    Dahone's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    I have researched the boot intensely as well......The "earflaps" are called a shoe gore or goring. Very common. Although the particular type of elastic is not.
    The costumer used was well known for above average craftsmanship......so I wouldn't discount the fact that the boot could have been made exclusively for the production.

  6. #6

    Re: History of the boot

    Dahone,

    Yeah, I was wondering about that too! I have an email inquiry into Angel's to see what records they might have. Also, I don't know if, back in the day when B&N was separate, if even THEY made all their own stuff. A lot of prop/costumiers make some, and buy a LOT.

    With the reinforced parts, the attention to detail, and the volume of available nondescript Chels boots... I just really wonder.

  7. #7

    Re: History of the boot

    There is almost no question in my mind its a canvas boot. Additionally, the clean half-hexagon toe (not squared as is oft repeated) is highly indicative to me of a shoe that was built by the costumer in-house.

  8. #8

    Re: History of the boot

    Lufo,

    They very well may have been built in-house... I'm just presenting a theory here.

    Here's a question for all of you lineage guys... There were a lot of different costumes... the Supertrooper...ESB, ROTJ... and then the traveling shows various combinations. Were all of those the same boot? Not the same style, mind you, but the same exact pair?

  9. #9
    Dahone's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    Note: PrePro and ROTJ costumes that have been on display have a different Gore (elastic).

  10. #10

    Re: History of the boot

    Dahone,

    But are they all structurally the same? Same seam lines, etc?

  11. #11

    Re: History of the boot

    Lufo, yeah... the actual shape of the toe is an issue to the 'found item' argument.

    Lufo1138 said: View Post
    There is almost no question in my mind its a canvas boot. Additionally, the clean half-hexagon toe (not squared as is oft repeated) is highly indicative to me of a shoe that was built by the costumer in-house.

  12. #12
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    Re: History of the boot

    I to have looked and came to the conclusion that they were custom made

    there is a pic of Fett with vader on a Promo tour, and Fetts boots seem to have liffter soles ,
    so this also makes me think they are custom made

  13. #13

    Re: History of the boot

    BGH, I saw that pic... I thought those were the regular shoes resoled?

  14. #14
    RafalFett's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    Judging by these images that can be found in the gallery, the boots and all soft parts are made by 'Berman and Nathan', this means custom made (?).

    boba-fett-costume-documentation-uniform-jpg boba-fett-costume-documentation-suppliers-list-jpg

    This is where you must do the research.

    As you can see here they were long time costume providers in the art of cinematography.
    Last edited by RafalFett; Jun 18, 2011 at 1:01 AM. Reason: Link added.

  15. #15
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    Re: History of the boot

    I think that about proves there hand made for the costume

  16. #16

    Re: History of the boot

    Rafal & BGH,

    Okay, this is the key point where I play devils advocate (just for the sake of discussion, I'm not trying to be argumentative or 'flame', is that the right word, here)...

    B&N, like any film/stage costumers... Didn't MAKE all of their items. They certainly made a lot of their things, but a lot was off the shelf too.

    Listen, I agree that given the odd shape of the toe, and the multiple known soles, of the boot...B&N very well may have produced the boots to order for the Supertrooper costume. However, given the availability of that style at the time, the complexity of constucting/building that style (in a clean fashion), and the production quality included in what B&N would have considered a 'stage boot'... Doesn't it warrant further research until more definitive proof surfaces?

    I guess I'm feeling a bit like a contrarian, and that's really not my intended tone. However, when the B&N list was made public (thanks Art!) that just reaffirmed my thoughts that it was an off the shelf boot modified.

    The biggest points in my mind that theyay have been custom made (yes, I'm arguing both sides... Hey, either way I'm be 'right' haha) were the odd shaped toe (which actually CAN be found in some early 70's UK chels boots) and the lack of a vertical seam directly below the goring (which I also have found, but only on leather production boots).

  17. #17
    RafalFett's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    I never said that Berman and Nathan LTD did the boots from scratch, I just pointed out the right direction for you. This is where you must start the research. It might be possible that they used an existing product and alter it to fit their needs. But they might did the boots from scratch...

    The Berman and Nathan LTD was taken over by Angels, another UK costume makers for the movie business.

  18. #18

    Re: History of the boot

    Rafal,

    Yessir! I've already contacted Angel's. I'll share the results when I get them.

  19. #19

    Re: History of the boot

    I should also point out that a lot of costumers suppliment their scratch built stuff with off the shelf items, old stock buy outs, estate sales, etc.

    So, even if the boots are a 'found item' the b&n/angels lead still might not go anywhere. I guess what I'm suggest is, if anyone else is researching this, don't discount still researching original manufacturers.

  20. #20
    JimmyC's Avatar
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    Re: History of the boot

    I'm really loving this debate here... now I'm no expert in the Fett boots, but, i do know a bit about the TK Chelsea boots I ordered for my TK a few years ago.. now, I read someplace that when asked, Jeremy Bulloch had said the boots he wore were "uncomfortable".. and i can definitely say, my Chelsea boots were very uncomfortable until i put some gel soles in them... they were the real deal from England even...

    OK so my theory, hear me out... What if they were reverse engineered.. basically they made a pattern from some Chelsea or Jodhpur boots and used different materiel to put them back together with a different sole... most of the masked costumed boots from the movies have the same look to them and maybe that's the best they could do for a "new character" without changing the style...

    The high-res images of the Fett boots look to be made out of some type of canvas materiel.....

    Wonder if a company out there ever made Jodhpur or Chelsea boots in a canvas material? i dont think so.. just because, they are basically riding and stable boots.. you would think that you would want leather.... style boots on the other hand... maybe...

    TORONTO Canvas Chelsea Boot - TopShop - Polyvore

    food for thought and my my two cents...

    -Jimmy

  21. #21

    Re: History of the boot

    My uncle was a hardhat diver in the 70s and he had a few pairs of Boba Fett boots, in grey and blue. they had the same toe, same sole, and same ribbing on them. They were made of basically oiled canvas with a rubber backing and had mostly rotted away by the time me and my cousins helped him clean out his old dive locker in about 85 or so.

    No question that these are dive boots of some sort.

  22. #22
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    Re: History of the boot

    double post

  23. #23
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    Re: History of the boot

    boba-fett-costume-screen-test-01-jpg
    Nice idea but not likely , these were all white canvas to start

  24. #24

    Re: History of the boot

    agreed. the supertrooper pics available make it clear these started out as pristine white canvas boots. in fact, you can still see some of the white showing on the ribbing in the recent exhibits where they were scuffed -- revealing the original material under the paint.

  25. #25

    Re: History of the boot

    Okay. I've learned not to argue on the internet.
    Good luck finding the boot, it'd be really cool to see that.

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