In our village of Cervera you find fans of the espadrille like Ramon and his wife Paquita, who day after day produce espadrilles entirely hand sewn.
Their technique is traditional and their product is ecological, comfortable and very affordable. Even today the sewing is handmade.
Here are some pictures in the different steps needed to make a espadrille:
First, the cutting of the fabric. Here is our friend Ramon, responsible for cutting the different elements that make up a perfect espadrille. He is a typical villager, talking loudly, making you feel welcome, and working hard while singing old tunes and cursing our computerized society. And of course, because hard work makes you thirsty, he joins his friends to enjoy a well deserved pause (La Rioja is known for its red wine). The ambience is terrific.
When the various components are ready (braided rope sole, the cotton pieces of cloth to be assembled, thread and laces) Ramon distributes the materials to seamstresses. These work at home and often get together with friends to combine business with pleasure. In every village in the world, gossip serves as an information channel, and believe me, everybody is a target of commentary. The mood is high, , the comments flow and if you walk past their door, do not forget to stop and say hello and ask after the last new-born or the health of the grandfather. Village life has its demands and its protocol.
Paquita gives a demonstration of her art. Her movements are energetic, fast and secure, and these reflect a tradition passed from mother to daughter for generations. The stitching is perfect and regular, and she works at an amazing speed.
Here are some pictures that show you the different phases of the hand sewing of an espadrille:
Frankly, when you wear an espadrille, you do not wear an ordinary shoe. Not only is it pretty, comfortable and lightweight, but even your mind is light, almost already on vacation.