Friday, 19 June 2015

About espadrilles...

Today  bought a pair of espadrilles. You certainly know the mostly cheap flat fabric shoes with kind of raffia soles? They used to be quite fashionable in the 80s, and I used to wear them a lot as a teen. I mean, you couldn't wear them long, as soon as they got wet they had to be thrown away.

Heute habe ich Espadrilles im Ausverkauf erstanden. Kennt Ihr sicher, diese billigen, flachen Stofflatschen mit geflochtenen Sohlen aus einem hanfähnlichen Material? Die waren ja total in während den 80ern, und ich trug die sehr oft als Teenager. Wenn man sie auch nie lange tragen konnte, denn bei Regen zerfielen sie oft in Sekundenschnelle.

I learned some time ago that espadrilles were en vogue already during the 40s and 50s. I didn't know this before as for me they were so typical 80s.

Ich habe kürzlich herausgefunden, dass Espadrilles bereits in den 40ern und 50ern angesagt waren. Zuvor war ich der Ansicht, die wären eine Erfindung der 80er gewesen.

Traditionally worn by Spanish fishermen, they soon became a popular staple for casual summer outfits, for many summer activities. (As a teen, I always though they were a Chinese invention as they usually were made in China. And very cheap, bad quality.)

Ursprünglich wurden sie von spanischen Fischern getragen, wurden aber später populär als Bestandteil von sommerlichen Outfits. Als Teenager dachte ich, die seien eine chinesische Erfindung, da die meisten damals in China produziert wurden und auch wirklich entsprechend billig gemacht waren...



I thought it would be fun to show you a few pictures from the past with famous and non-famous people wearing espadrilles.

Ich habe hier ein paar Bilder von berühmten und "weniger berühmten" Menschen, die in jener Zeit Espadrilles trugen.

In my youth they were worn by girls only. At least in Switzerland. My Italian husband told me he wore them too. So it was maybe a cultural issue.
But then, look at the pics. Celebrities like Gary Cooper, John Wayne, and Humphrey Bogart, some of Hollywood's most famous actors, wore them in their holidays. They rock!

Zu meiner Zeit (ja, das klingt nach "alt") trugen nur Mädchen diese Schuhe. Zumindest in der Schweiz. Mein Mann sagte mir einmal, er hätte die in seiner Kindheit in Italien ebenfalls oft angehabt. Das sind wohl kulturelle Unterschiede, die aber vermutlich eher in meiner Jugend entstanden sind. Denn in früheren Jahrzehnten trugen Hollywood-Grössen wie Gary Cooper, Ohne Wayne und Humphrey Bogart ganz selbstverständlich Espadrilles in ihren Ferien. Wie toll ist das denn!

 Spanish painter Salvador Dalí kind of had to wear this traditional Spanish footwear.

Der spanische Maler Salvador Dalí war fast verpflichtet, die typisch spanischen Schuhe zu tragen.

Of course, there always existed varieties of shapes and designs. Espadrille wedges seemed to be a favorite of the ladies back then, and still are today.

Natürlich waren Espadrilles bald auch ein modisch variierender Artikel, der in einer Vielzahl von Designs daherkam. Damals wie heute beliebt sind Espadrille Wedges.

 Hope you had fun. I don't know how you feel, but after I had learned that those rather "cheap" shoes had a certain place in fashion history, I will never look at them the same way.

Hoffentlich hattet Ihr Spass. Ich weiss nicht wie es Euch geht, aber wenn man sieht, welche Füsse dieser doch eher bescheidene Schuh in seiner Geschichte schon zierte, dann sieht man diese "billigen" Latschen ganz plötzlich mit etwas anderen Augen.

Edit: My wonderful vintage sewing friend Couturette wrote a great tutorial about making your own lined espadrilles with a ready-made sole. Check it out! (Aug 6th 2015)


  1. Espadrilles - I loved them in the 80ies and missed them sorely when they got out of fashion and became unavailable. It's great that they are back - they are are certainly much more comfortable than the modern ballerina slippers with rubber soles that make your feet sweat. Until today I never knew that they were fahshionable in the 40ies as well - another reason to go and get some pairs :-)

    1. I didn't know it until some time ago... I like ballerinas for cooler days, but your right, on a hot summer day there's nothing better than a pair of breezy espadrilles. It totally gives you that beach, summer and holiday feeling!

  2. I knew espadrilles were in fashion mid century. I used to wear them in the 80s as well. As I recall, they were rather comfortable :) Maybe I should invest in a pair? Thanks for the inspiration :)

  3. Ooh, I love that picture of John Wayne in his shorty-shorts and espadrilles ;) I recently found some espadrille wedges and they're fast becoming my favorite Summer footwear! They're so comfortable make any outfit instantly beachy.


    1. I absolutely agree, John Wayne looks surprisingly different than in his movies. I love espadrille wedges, as they look a bit more elegant and feminine than the flats. But they can be dangerous. I had a torn ligament 2 years ago because of a pair of platform espadrilles...

  4. Love espadrilles! Actually I need more of them in different colors since I only own black ones...

  5. Would you believe it, I can confidently say that this is one style of shoe I've never had the pleasure of wearing. They were not common in small town Canada when I was growing up, though I'm sure most people - or at least most fashionable folks - were aware of their general existence. They are a bit easier to find nowadays, but still not as common as in South American, Europe and perhaps even the states. I'd love tor finally try a pair. They'd be perfect for walks on either of our towns two beaches. Perhaps the thrift store gods will smile on me and send some my way this year. :)

    Big hugs & many heartfelt thanks for your fantastic comment on today's new post,
    ♥ Jessica

    1. Dear Jessica, I am amazed you have never been wearing espadrilles in your life so far. They are comfortable to wear, and you also can walk short distances. Perfect for a short walk along a beach or so, but you certainly have to get used to a different way of walking. I would like to add some ties to mine for a better fit, or you usually end up scuffing your feet. However, If you ever have the chance to buy a pair, do it. I think you really have to make this experience, it's part of my teen-summer-memories.

  6. Mit 'Ohne Wayne' meinst Du wohl 'John Wayne'...
    Du schreibst sehr inspiriert - fände ich Vintage-Mode nicht so grottenlangweilig, würde ich bei Dir bestimmt öfter lesen. So bin ich nur zufällig hier gelandet. Man kann im Leben wohl doch nicht alles haben ;)
    Liebe Grüße,


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