Why Are Blundstone Boots So Popular?

Carina Wolff, a content creator in Los Angeles, was inspired to buy Blundstone boots in 2021 after constantly seeing her husband in his pair. “I wear them with overalls or mom-jeans-style pants,” she said, “during the day, running errands all over.” Ms. Wolff, 32, added that she can wear her faded brown-leather boots out to dinner, too.

The frequency and zeal with which product recommendation websites, including those of GQ, New York Magazine and even The New York Times, have written about Blundstone’s boots over the last few years may suggest that the brand is some hot new label. But as some of those websites have noted, the company was founded more than 150 years ago, in 1870, by the married couple John and Eliza Blundstone.

Back then the founders imported Chelsea boots made in England, where the style originated, to the Australian state of Tasmania, where they lived and started the business. By 1900, the company had opened its first factory in Tasmania, and in 1932 the business was acquired by the brothers Thomas and James Cuthbertson, whose descendants are its current owners. Though some Blundstone footwear is still made in Tasmania, it’s also made in Vietnam, China, Mexico and Indonesia.

Tim Engel, the vice president of sales at Blundstone, started working for the company 17 years ago. He said that interest in its Chelsea boots, which start at about $200, began to surge over the last five to eight years because of a confluence of trends.

“A few years back heritage brands got really hot, and then Chelsea boots got really hot, and here we were, with this 150-year-old company that makes Chelsea boots,” Mr. Engel said on a video call.

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