What overall trends are you seeing in the boot market?
Out of the box fit has become the most important trend by far. Whoever dials in fit wins on the boot wall. We developed our Golden Last fit for men last season and continue to refine and improve on it. New for this season we are introducing our Diamond Last fit for women. Once our Last was dialed, the next step was liners and we have completely redesigned all of our liners for this season.
How has your approach to lacing systems evolved in the past few years?
We've been a committed BOA partner and continue to be. Our approach to using the BOA system is what sets us apart, always looking to use the system in new ways for improved fit and power. We feature a number of BOA systems including our Constrictor, which uses BOA power to pull straps that wrap around your foot. Constrictor comes in both a dual zone BOA version and a BOA/Lace Hybrid version. We are also using BOA to enhance traditional lacing with our Winch system that uses BOA power to pull your laces tighter across the instep where you need it most for heel hold.
At DC we are also dedicated to improving the original lacing system, traditional laces. Our latest addition is the Cinch lace lock that helps you create a zonal closure with ease. We also design our shells to close more efficiently with our Direct Power Lacing design.
What new construction techniques, technologies, or fabrics do you anticipate breaking out next year?
We've been advancing our Aerotech system and feature a new metallic mesh on our Status model. Last season we introduced a few Genuine Leather versions of a few models. New for this year we have 3 models that focus on the use of leather, the Status, Terrain and Unit. Leather feels so good and just gets better with age and these new leathers feature silicone weather protection.
What trends do you anticipate in the realm of graphics and colors?
The focus is on quality material, texture and details rather than graphics and color. Subtle graphic hits for some flavor and small pops of color still have there place but most customers are buying a boot to last for years and don't want anything too loud. At the same time they don't want the same old solid black boot. This has become the biggest challenge for boot designers over the last few years, how to make your conservative boots stand out.