Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Summertime is espadrille-time!

Ever since I was a teen-aged Francophile, I've loved the look and comfort of this classic Basque footwear. In the folly of youth, in a vain attempt to prolong the joy of my infrequent sojourns in France, I was known to wear espadrilles in the heart of New England winters. When there wasn't any slush afoot, of course.

Although these traditional rope-soled shoes are mostly vacation attire, they can be seen occasionally on some of the best feet in Paris. I'm no style maven, but I have noticed an uptick in espadrille-spottings in the city. And some of the wedge-heeled espadrilles are 100% tendance for the summer months.

A few tips for old-fashioned espadrilles: they are normally a bit tight when you buy them, and will stretch out slightly with wear, until you get them wet (not recommended). Also, there is no left or right shoe: they adapt to your foot as you wear them, which is in part why they are so comfortable.

But where to buy espadrilles in Paris? They're not so easy to track down, and are rarely found in any of the thousands of "regular" shoe stores. Fortunately, a cobbler on rue du Temple has the classic, flat hand-sewn espadrilles in a variety of colors and some great stripes for €13 a pair. Leather espadrilles for €30. and a variety of wedge-heeled sandals. All made in Spain.

Being a traditional cordonnerie, the shop also makes plaques, rubber stamps, and keys. Open Tuesday through Saturday.

Bernard Services
23 rue du Temple
(corner of rue Saint-Merri)
4e arrondissement
01 42 77 34 99

If you're looking for a Made-in-France espadrille, check out the website of Paré Gabia. It features espadrilles still made in the Basque region, combining tradition with innovation.


The Midlife Gals said...

Aloe! The Midlife Gals from Texas here. You wre so kind to comment on our blog a few months back, and we've now morphed into a full-on website! Please come and have a look.


And, don't miss our videos! Plus, we're starting our own Internet RADIO show that anyone can listen to wherever they live...I'd love to tell you more about that so if you would email me from our site I will add your email address to our announcement list.

your blog is FANTASTIQUE!

KK and SalGal

Fifi Flowers said...

OH FUN... grab some cute espadrilles and watch the parade... I love French things!

Polly-Vous Francais said...


Yes, I love French things, too. Not that I need to tell you. Although espadrilles are not yet the IT shoe again in Paris in summer, I bet they will be soon because they're really in with the 20-something American crowd. Time will tell!

And thanks for stopping by, midlife gals. Always a pleasure.

Espadrilles distribution said...

Hi !

One question please, are those espadrilles made in Spain? If they are, they probably come from my hometown village of la Rioja Spain.
I imported the same espadrilles from Spain this summer, they are available on my website www.espadrillestore.ca .



Espadrilles distribution said...

I will be adding next month on www.espadrilles.ca a 4 minute documentary on how the espadrilles are made in my hometown village in la Rioja, Spain.
I'll keep you updated ; )

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