PUMA Clyde

PUMA Clyde






In a similar fashion to how ‘Made in France’ adidas Superstars and ‘Made in USA’ CONVERSE Chuck Taylors are held as ‘Holy Grails’ amongst their collectors; the same goes for ‘Made in Yugoslavia’ PUMA Clydes. Made famous by the infamous and stylish Walt ‘Clyde’ Frazier from their introduction during the 1972/73 season the PUMA Clyde was a perfect blend of performance and style on & off the court which went on to be one of the prominent footwear of choices within the hip-hop & b-boy community.

Walt Frazier was given the nickname of ‘Clyde’ from his stylish resemblance to Clyde Barrow from the movie Bonnie & Clyde, and adopted the movie line “I steal for a living” for his habit of stealing balls from his opponents. He became the first basketball player to have his own signature shoe when the previous PUMA Suede was customised for him and emblazed with gold-block lettering bearing his nickname of ‘Clyde’.

For the duration that the Puma Clyde was manufactured in Yugoslavia there were slight differences with certain details that those with a discerning eye would notice; including the box design, font of the ‘Clyde’ stamp and sole pattern. As the final production was hand finished other certain details such as the stamp position, form stripe shape & stitching would also differ from shoe to shoe; sometimes within the same pair. This added a unique one-off quality unlike any other sneaker production you would experience.

Originally released with 5 varying suede colours (Kelly Green, Gold, Scarlet, White & Blue) with a White form stripe they went on to be manufactured in an array of different colour variations and mock-up’s. However, the original colourways still remain a staple favourite with all retro’s that have since followed.

Anyone that’s lucky enough to own a pair would now that now 40 years after their inception their style and comfort haven’t changed one bit, unlike other brands and models from the same era. To this day and for many years to come, people will be searching to add a pair of ‘Made in Yugoslavia’ PUMA Clydes to their collection; and no one can put it better than Walt ‘Clyde’ Frazier himself:

“If you wore Clydes man, you were cool, you knew what was happening. You were in style… When you’re a part of something, you don’t think you’re becoming a part of history, so I was just thanking god that I was just fortunate enough to endorse this shoe.”


Photography: errol

Text: Professor B