Chelsea Boot

1960s Beatles - wearing cuban-heeled, winkle-picker Chelsea boots.

1960s Beatles – wearing cuban-heeled, winkle-picker Chelsea boots.

Loake Hutchison Chelsea Boot

Loake Hutchison Chelsea Boot

The Chelsea boot is also occasionally known as the Dealer, Jodhpur, or Paddock boot. It is a tight-fitting, ankle-high boot that originated in the Victorian era, and was first used for horse riding. Charles Goodyear’s development of vulcanised rubber enabled J. Sparkes-Hall, bootmaker to Queen Victoria, to invent the elastic gusset boot in 1837. It was initially designed for horse-riding – hence the Dealer/Jodhpur/Paddock names. It seems to have acquired its current name from The Chelsea Set, a group of fashionistas in the 1950s/60s that included Mary Quant and Jean Shrimpton, who liked this form of shoe. Famous Chelsea boot fans include the early Beatles (right) and the style continues to be popular, largely without the Cuban heels and winkle-picker toes of the Beatle-boots – more like the Loake Hutchison on the left.