The Ol' Founding Story
As far as we're concerned, Wilcox has always existed - it just took some time for us to recognize it and give it a name. It's a way of thinking. A way of being.
The Wilcox way is building, exploring, and living an adventurous life. Calculating risks & chasing your curiosity.
From the first taste we got of building a shed with grandpa, then our own skate ramps in the driveway, to when we were finally able to kick start dad's old Honda XR, we've been hooked on the thrill of building, exploring, and living an adventurous life.
The rubber really hit the road for this thing we call Wilcox in 2014 on a motorcycle tour south of Mexico. A heavy storm placed fate in the palm of our hands. Taking cover in a small town jam-packed with leather workers and boot makers, we discovered the craftsmanship & care of handmade welted boots. That trip literally paved the way for what became Wilcox.
Put all those things together, and add a love for the classic things in life, and here we are today. We're still fueled by those same principles we learned when we were young.
We exist to build the best damn boots we can and follow our curiosity along the way.
What makes a quality boot?
For years we wore through boots in less than a season, then we realized - footwear these days wasn't made to last. It's disposable. We were tired of the existing options. Classic leather boots are rarely comfortable. Comfortable boots are rarely stylish. They're too expensive, or poorly made. Our goal has always been to blend modern comfort with classic styles & heritage construction - all at the right price. Our boots are built to last, with a resoleable Goodyear Welt.
Our primary goal as bootmakers is to practice & preserve the heritage methods of shoemaking. While most footwear brands have replaced quality with quantity, we've doubled down on using the best techniques with the best materials.
Since its invention in the late 1800s, and to this day, the Goodyear Welt is still the most durable method of shoe construction.
"They don't make 'em like they used to." Fortunately for you, we do.
It's home to the largest footwear industry in the west. Leon is to boots as Detroit is to cars.
In selecting where to produce, we wanted to work where there was a long history of bootmakers and local access to all of our materials. In fact, all our materials are made within a 10 mile radius of our production line. León is known as "the footwear capital of the world" and is the heart of footwear in North America.
Producing in this important center allows us to build premium boots without any constraints on materials or highly talented craftsmen. This means none of the materials are shipped overseas and our carbon footprint is hyper localized.
Having worked, traveled, studied & volunteered throughout North America across multiple decades, one of our goals was to bring together the design, materials, skills, & economies of scale from our great continent. With our long-standing collaboration, we've built a company that is known for producing high quality products without going overseas to slash costs.
Like most things in life, the beginning was bumpy and we're still a little rough around the edges. In our 8th year now, we're proud of the history we're creating and excited for what the future holds.
We wouldn't be here without support from boot enthusiasts all over the world. Over 20,000 customers from 30 countries and counting! Thank you!
I like the Kern so much that I bought the black version with the white soles. I’ve been wearing this boot almost every day for the past year and it has not let me down.
Great looking boots and very comfortable right out of the box. Strongly recommend!
I’ve got the Kern in brown with black soles and black with black soles. Super comfy right outta da box! No break-in required. Roomy toebox for heavier socks. I put a set of @generationlaces on both pairs and they were perfect! Definitely recommended.
This is my second pair of The Kern boots, black and brown now! The most comfortable boots I’ve ever worn on the first wear! They’ve become my daily Go-To boots.
I purchased a pair of Kerns for work after owning 2 pairs of Wilcox Fairfax, 1 black, 1 brown, which are my everyday go to outside of work. I found the Kern to be a little roomier in fit, very comfy, and the leather incredibly durable. I’ve delivered bread for 35 years and this job is surprisingly hard on shoes, usually the toes get chewed up from kicking around stacks of bread, a month in and they’re still flawless! I put in anywhere from 10,000 - 15,000 steps in a day and my feet have new life! I’ve always bought high quality shoes/boots especially for work, these are a game changer!
Things that can be improved upon:
Hook eyelets on the top two.
A bigger pull strap, I can’t hook my finger in there.
When it comes time to re-sole these, I will have the shoe cobbler put in bigger straps & hook eyelets.
Love these boots!
I have only had these boots a few weeks and I am exceptionally satisfied with this purchase. Some thoughts on my first few weeks:
Comfort - It took a week to give these boots the initial break in, which could be expected for any high quality leather boot), and after the first week, these boots feel AMAZING. I wear the boots all day long - and am on my feet all day long. I'm a teacher and I'm on my feet all day. By time I get home after working up to ten hours, I'm really in no rush to take them off as they're that comfortable! The sizing is great. I wear a 12.5 and the 13s feel perfect!
Support - I have flat feet, am recovering from two ankle surgeries, and have a neuroma in my foot (think walking on a marble) so I use an orthotic. Orthotic aside, these boots comfortably hug my foot and I have zero concerns with anything happening to my feet. These are the boots I've been looking for!
Looks: I admire the stitching on these boots every time I grab them and put them on. I wear them with jeans and dress casual pants and they look great either way. Hell, these boots would look great with just about anything. The stitching screams of great craftsmanship and the leather feels great. I'm getting lots of compliments on them!
Durability - Although I've only had these a few weeks, once you get these in your hands and on your feet, it's easy to see these boots are meant to last! That stitching though...
All-in-all I am exceptionally satisfied with these boots. While the price tag might deter some, keep in mind these boots will last YEARS AND YEARS! You will not be disappointed with these amazing boots!
I have my second pair of Wilcox boots and am very pleased with the fit, the comfort and the quality
I love my boots so far!! Quite comfortable yet it still needs some break in. I usually wear it casually along with jeans. I definitely will buy another pairs in black soon!
Wilcox belts are just incredibly well made. The 1.25 works for nearly everything I have. I'll definitely be a return customer for belts AND boots.
This is a really beautiful leather belt for a great price! You should definitely buy!
I love my Wilcox boots this is my second pair of these boots and I'm still wearing the first pair! Best boots I've ever worn
Recently bought my first pair of Wilcox boots, a beautiful pair of brown leather Shiloh's. They are superbly made and oh so comfortable. I look forward wearing them for years to come. Their service and delivery are excellent. I can whole heartedly recommend Wilcox.
I've had these on my wish list for a number of years and I finally pulled the trigger. I'm so glad I did! They are comfortable and well made. They took about 10 days of wear to break in (felt a little tight in the toe at first), but are now a dream!!! I'm looking forward to putting many miles into these bad boys!
They feel great right out of the box and run true to size. great craftsmanship and quality leather.
Kern Boots are the best Boots I’ve ever had. Enough said!! Just received my second pair.