March 24, 2008 BY CAPSULESNEWS

logo_redwing_main.gifRed Wing, a venerable maker of high-grade, steel-toe work boots, is debuting a line of outerwear, marking its first push into apparel and highlighting the label’s growing cachet as a lifestyle brand. Made under license with Richlu, a Canadian workwear company, the leather coats and jackets, launching this fall, may look tough, but the range is squarely aimed at the company’s new and growing customer base: the fashion-forward, contemporary market.  Long a staple for construction workers and farmers, Red Wings have unexpectedly become the It-boot among the trend-conscious. Three years ago, the fashion set in Japan and Europe “discovered” the boots, lured by the brand’s apple-pie credibility and rugged designs, and suddenly hip boutiques in Tokyo and Paris were calling the company’s headquarters in Red Wing, Minn.—a town of 16,000 located on a tight bend in the Mississippi River, 60 miles south of Minneapolis—for product. Red Wing had done no advertising nor pitched fashion editors. (DNR)