Harness boots are sometimes mentioned in the same company as biker boots and engineer boots.
Engineer boots were originally designed as heavy duty work boots and had an adjustable metal buckle. They were worn by Engineers working on US steam trains. In the 1950s and 1960s these rugged boots became popular with motorcyclists.. The biker boot became iconic when worn by Marlon Brando in the movie ‘The Wild One’. They became linked to rebels and anti-establishment. Also popular with rockers and musicians, John Lennon wore a pair.
In the 1850s The Frye company introduced a full length boot with two metal rings and four leather straps, forming a leather harness. This boot had became popular with the US cavalry in the American civil war.
As styles have mixed, some biker boots now have a metal ring and harness rather than a buckle.
The harness boot style usually has higher heel, sometimes angled in the style of cowboy or cuban heel boots.
In recent years there have been other variations on the harness boot including the Saint Laurent Wyatt. Some incorporate elements of the sleek, taper toe look seen on Chelsea boots.
Thomas Bird Harness Boot
We took inspiration from classic harness and biker boots, combined with the elegance and style of a chelsea boot.
We wanted a boot that looked great, with character and attitude, but also was beautifully made with the finest materials and craftsmanship.
Thomas Bird Vincent has a classic 4 strap, 2 metal ring harness. The vamp is cut in one smooth, continuous piece from the the toe up to the top of the boot (see photo below).
It has a 40mm heel, higher than our Eastwood chelsea boots, and a single side zipper.
Our boots have a taper, round toe and a pull tab at the back to help pull them on,
The linings are made from soft calf leather. making it easier for the foot to slip into and providing extra comfort.
Four options are available – in black calf, black suede, tan/brown suede and grey suede.
They are made by skilled craftsmen in a small artisian factory in Italy.
We also have a more stripped back variation without the leather harness, called Memphis, currently available in black calf leather and black suede.