Sunday, July 8


One item on my ‘must have’ list while in Spain is a handmade pair of espadrilles. Popular in the Mediterranean region for centuries, these brightly colored, rope-soled shoes have become synonymous with La Rioja, the beautiful wine region in the north of Spain, where the shoes were first manufactured by hand over 300 years ago. The artisans that hand-stitch them, mostly women, sit in their homes and porches with thread and needle continuing with a tradition that they have passed from generation to generation.

Espadrilles became the 'play shoes' for European style-makers like Coco Chanel in Biarritz and Deauville, Picasso and Dali in the Costa Brava, Grace Kelly and Brigitte Bardot in the Costa Azul, Princess Caroline in Provence, and Princess Diana in Mallorca.

In Madrid Carolina Herrera stocks up on the traditional handmade shoes at Calzados Lobo, a store that has stood near Plaza Mayor for more than a century. Once I find out the best places to buy espadrilles in Barcelona and Mallorca I will report back with an update.

If you want a pair of handmade espadrilles without travelling to the Mediterranean visit Lolas Lolos Lolitos or Sorprentas online.

9 comments: said...

Love espadrilles and the colors in that photo, what a feast for my eyes. thanks

The Peak of Chic said...

I used to wear espadrilles all the time, but haven't in years. Thanks for the online shopping tip; just may have to pick up a pair!

Fairfax said...

Wonderful!!! I love that picture. Every colour of the rainbow. I just saw espadrille wedges in the store and almost bought them. I used to wear them do death years ago!

Someone just sent me a link to a british food store in the US. $3.96 for a pack of HobNobs!!! Outrageous!

ALL THE BEST said...

Fairfax, I 've found a shop here that carries US food and they charge £3.50 for A&W Rootbeer!!

rita konig said...

when you go to spain you absolutely have to check out Trasierra, it is the most beautiful hotel an hour and a half from Seville, i really hope you will be somewhere near. the website is: the owner is a wonderful woman called charlotte scott, she is a dear friend of mine, she has such great style and is a fabulous person. if you can call her and say that i suggested you go, she is super nice and will take great care of you. rita

frances said...

what a fantastic photo!

Henry said...

Great article.

Did you find out which places in Spain still make these?

Victor Costas said...

Nice article, I've been looking for a long time a store in the US selling the REAl espadrilles hand made in Spain or France, I found one store : located in Montreal. The making of section of the website shows how the "alpargatas" are hand made in a small village of la Rioja, Spain.

Victor Costas

Heather racine said...

I just got my espadrilles from , they are located in Montreal and the shipping price to the US is quite cheap compared to the price I used to pay when I purchased in European websites.

Happy browsing : )

Heather Racine