Converse Jack Purcell – The history behind the iconic smile

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One of Converse’s most well-known is the All Star, created in 1917 and later promoted by legendary basketball player Chuck Taylor, but there’s another classic silhouette by the sporting brand that you might’ve forgotten about, the Converse Jack Purcell.

Purposefully designed for the Canadian World champion badminton player by the same name in 1923, this unorthodox sport shoe features all the famous characteristics of its older brother, with some slightly new additions. The most noticeable is the extra rubber protection across the toe box, distinguished by the signature “smile”, a definitive feature that has allowed the model to become a favourite to many in the Asian and niche European markets. The smile was also a hint to Jack Purcell’s sly deviance used on the court during his professional career to outsmart his opponents.

Over the years, more and more people have grown accustomed to the slimmer silhouette and the friendly little smile accented by numerous different colourways, from woodland camouflage and premium black leather to the more recent LTT version (seen below).

The Converse Jack Purcell is available now in all size? stores and online, priced between £30 – 60.

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