Talk about a style that has withstood the test of time! Espadrille shoes have literally been worn for thousands of years and continue to be a popular choice of footwear for many. Both high society celebrities and the average consumer appreciate the versatility of espadrilles. Below, we take a look at their fascinating history and how much they have evolved through the ages!
What Are Espadrilles?
The characteristic that sets the espadrille apart from other shoes is the plant-based braided sole that gives the shoe its classic appearance. The sole is traditionally made from esparto grass, a plant native to Spain and northern Africa.
The strands of the grass are dried, braided, and sewn in tight layers to create an attractive, lightweight, yet durable sole. A fabric upper is then attached to the sole. Individual designers may also add tying bands, buckles, and other decorative elements.
Then And Now
Espadrilles trace their origins back to France and Spain in the 13th century. Always practical, they were worn by royalty, religious leaders, soldiers, farmers, and dancers. The light materials used in their construction made them suitable for the warm climate of the Pyrenees.
Eventually, the shoes were manufactured and sold in larger French towns. From there, they spread across the globe through an intricate network of trade routes. Espadrilles became very popular in America during the 1940s. Many Hollywood celebrities and famous artists like Salvador Dali wore them with pride.
Today, the espadrille has been modernized to include an additional layer of rubber under the sole and adapted to fit various styles with higher heels. As always, they are a favorite summer choice for every branch of society, including royalty, civilians, and celebrities!
Join in the Fun of Wearing Espadrilles!
Ready to get a pair of these fascinating shoes? They come in styles to fit every budget, lifestyle, and occasion. Today, many people enjoy wearing either flat or wedge styles for both casual and formal events.