Espadrilles are halfway between sandals and sneakers, were it not for the fact that there is a shift in style – from beachwear to sophisticated style thanks to their essential nature. Although they had started discreetly, they have turned more and more outlandish: colors, patterns, the use of different materials -lace, leather, studs, fringes, pony skin. This is the genesis of such a versatile accessory which from a large-scale manufacturing product is now – generally – turning into an exclusive item.
With rope soles, espadrilles are canvas shoes uppers and it is high time for summertime to be back: shores, flowers in the hair, multicolored bracelets, light white dresses, Capri, Saint-Tropez. While writing ‘espadrilles’ three images are drafted in my mind: Spain, Bohemian traveler, the Seventies.
They are shoes created for workers and later turned into a status-symbol thanks to the Spanish brand Castaner. The brand started in 1927 and, during the Fifties and Sixties, made several icons of style of the time wear its Espadrilles: Grace Kelly, Brigitte Bardot e Jackie Kennedy.
As it often happens, after the golden age, the dark night comes: the trend had reached the top too fast and then it sank. By the way, in the Seventies, Espadrilles had been ”saved” by the young Yves Saint Laurent: in cooperation with the Castaner company, he adds wedge heels, prints and other textiles besides canvas, making espadrilles the must of the Decade.
Their history seems to be part of a summertime happy-end novel. Here you are some models, selected among several models seen on catwalks and here and there.
It really does not matter if it is to go to the beach, to go for a walk, to rush somewhere … just wear them and go far!