'At the frontier the environment is at first too strong for the man. He must accept the conditions which it furnishes, or perish, and so he fits himself into the Indian clearings and follows the Indian trails. Little by little he transforms the wilderness, but the outcome is not the old Europe... The fact is, that here is a new product that is American.'
- Frederick Jackson Turner, 'The Significance of the Frontier in American History'
Yuketen's Maine Guide collection draws inspiration from the early wilderness guides of New England, who in leading European hunters and traders into contact with indigenous North Americans brought about a cultural synthesis most aptly reflected in the boots these guides wore. The close-fitting, stitched wrappings of pliant leather worn by early natives reflected necessity laid bare by the bitterness of winter and the silent tread of the autumn hunt preceding. Modernization of the West brought lasts, dies and outsoles, applying durability to moccasin comfort. Rendered in a higher profile, the classic 'American' guide boot was born, and it is in tribute to the propulsive spirit of the boot's earliest owners that Yuketen has approached a new frontier in its design.
Each shoe is handstitched in our Maine, U.S.A. factory from Horween Chromexcel leather. The upper is hand-punched and handsewn with awl, needle, and thread on Yuketen's proprietary last from multiple pieces of leather in order to ensure reinforcement and is cinched at the base to create an integumentary fit. Chromexcel is a buttery, malleable 'pull-up' leather born of a unique double-tanning process of vegetable and chrome treatments, which imbues the leather with pleasantly aromatic liquor notes. It's suppleness, revealing of lighter tones in its oiled surface when stretched, makes it particularly suitable for moccasin construction. The embossing on the plug and shaft of each shoe is borrowed from Native American jewelry, as are the nickel conchos that adorn the outward facing shafts. Made in the USA, each concho is impressed with one of five Native American designs. Our signature baseball stitch overcast completes the embellishment.
A Vibram oil-resisting 2021 sole complements the dense eight layers of rubber and leather underfoot. Our distinctive midsole component, constructed from composition rubber and 100% vegetable-tanned leather which has been air-dried in a 90-day process, is Goodyear-stitched together before being directly stitched to the vamp leather. Steel shank reinforcements increase fitting in the arch and heel, forming a stable bridge between the heel and ball of the owner's foot which causes weight to be distributed more evenly across the foot and reduces foot fatigue. Our Yuketen signature tucks and full leather insoles are also made from 100% vegetable-tanned leather and will naturally accommodate the distinct shape of the wearer’s foot over time. The result is a shoe that will cradle its owner's foot, providing immeasurable comfort over a long trek.
Where to Buy
41 33 744 6878
3F, 4-7-8 Ueno
Taito-Ku, Tokyo 110-0005