Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Espadrilles for men & women - The origin

The espadrille is a traditional flat shoe designed with a canvas or cloth upper and soles made of rope, rubber or crepe. Shoemakers in the Pyrenees region, between Spain and France, first created the espadrille. By tradition, the espadrille had flat soles made of jute or esparto grass, a plant that produces fine, tough strands.

    A Shoe from Spain

  1. The alpargatero was a medieval shoemaker specializing in making the espardenya shoe in the Pyrenees region of northern Spain. They wove the basic material for the shoe sole from tough esparto grass. The alpargatero singed the esparto strands over a hot fire and then braided them to create the shoe. They coated the bottom of the shoe with pitch. A seamstress completed the job of stitching the uppers, made from woven flax, to the sole. Soldiers from Aragon and Catalaonia wore the tough footwear while on campaign.
  2. The Durable Espardenya

  3. The espardenya was inexpensive to make and very durable. The flexible rope soles allowed the shoe to conform to the shape of the foot, which made them extremely comfortable. Men as well as women wore espardenyas, which were ideal for work and travel over rough countryside and on mountain trails. They were suited for the warm summer months, but provided little warmth during the rest of the year.

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