The essence of espadrilles is the jute rope or braided hemp used on the sole, which gives the shoe its signature look.
Espadrilles were originally made in France and Spain and were worn by peasants then by King Aragon of Spain's infantry men in the 14th century. Priests and mine workers also donned them.
The sardana, a traditional dance from Catalonia, Spain, dates back to the 16th century and continues to be practiced today. It is done in a circle by dancers who wear espardenyes, a type of espadrille which is light, flexible and comfortable enough to perform in.
From Function to High Fashion
In the 1960s, French haute couture designer Yves Saint Laurent requested a special order of espadrilles with a heel, the first of its kind thereby popularizing the high-heeled wedge.
Men Wear Espadrilles Too
Actor Don Johnson, who played Sonny Crockett in the 1980s TV series Miami Vice, was pictured wearing white espadrilles to match his two-piece suit in the promotional materials advertising the show.
On the Feet of Royalty
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (aka: Kate Middleton), wore sling-back espadrilles in black on her cross-Canada tour with Prince William in 2011.
Have you unearthed your warm-weather shoes
only to find they're completely worn and in need of replacing? If gladiator sandals aren't your thing and flip-flops
are too casual, then we have the
solution for you: espadrilles!
High-heeled, mid-heeled or flat, espadrilles come in multiple shapes and colours, are simple in design and über-comfortable. They can be traced as far back as the 14th century (they became part of the standard military garb for King Aragon of Spain's infantry men
) and were more recently seen on the feet of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
(aka: Kate Middleton
Here are some little known facts about espadrilles and why, as you rock them this summer, you'll be wearing a piece of history on your feet.
What to Wear to a Summer Wedding