Tarvas are a Finnish shoe brand with a focus on practicality and weather resistance. Apparently Tarvas are now a thing. At least it seems Daiki Suzuki of Engineered Garments thinks so. He apparently likes them so much he’s produced the above Tarvas x EG colab.
Up until now I’ve never heard of Tarvas. However an EG co-sign has a habit of making me sit up and re-evaluate my shortcomings. It was the same story a couple of seasons back with the Hoka One One Tor Ultra Low. But now I’m looking at what are ostensibly grandad walking shoes, trying to fathom whether the EG stamp of approval elevates them to some kind of grail status.
There’s none of the usual EG asymmetry at play here. In fact, as far as I can make out the only evidence of Suzuki’s handiwork are the fact that they’ve got suede uppers in the colourways offered, an all black sole unit and the dual branding on the insole. You can grab these in the blue pictured, or black and that’s about it.
The fundamental USP for Tarvas and their ‘Explorer’ silhouette, appears to be the black 360° rubber mudguard that works to keep things dry and toasty, irrespective of environment. And I do kind of like the black on black, that chunky sole would create a suitably clunky counterpoint to a loose pair of rolled cotton pants.
Padded ankle supports and an all leather interior completes an offering that’s as rugged as it is anonymous. Seriously, irrespective of their Nepenthes connection, no one’s going to raise an eyebrow at these. Indeed I’d be surprised if anyone noticed you were wearing them at all. It’s quite possible for £259 you’d want a little more ka-boom.
Basically they look at lot like a proper sensible pair of rambling trainers. The sort of thing worn by old ladies wandering up and down Brighton pier. And of course 20-something fashion-ramblers who’ve read that plodding around Snowdon in a Berghaus mac is the new halloumi and spinach wrap – previously the new seven mojitos and 30 Marlboro lights.