I first saw a pair of Naguisa shoes through a window late one night when we were in Valencia. After that moment, I had been dreaming about them until the day I walked into one of my favorite boutiques in the Born district of Barcelona and saw them sitting on the shelf as part of their new spring collection! Spain is known for their craftsmen shoes; 90% of the time, when you flip a shoe over, it will say handmade in Spain. I love that! I love reading the words handmade especially since we live in a time when so many things are mechanized. I love the idea that by purchasing a pair of handmade shoes, you’re also purchasing the creativity, imagination, and delicate hand work that went into producing them. And even more than that, you’re enabling an artisan to continue the work he/she loves.
Yes, yes. The video’s in Spanish. So I’ll explain a few key elements. David, the narrator, is the son of Naguisa‘s founder who’s been making shoes for 30 years. He talks about how shoe making is an art form. With 5 basic yute models (the rope material on the bottom of the shoe), they can make many different designs, but each requires a significant amount of close hand work. He talks about how frustrating it can be to be a part of a craftsman shoe business when some people want to export the process of shoemaking to other countries where they can be made by machines completely and more cheaply. He talks about how proud he is of his family’s company and its legacy and how he doesn’t understand why people can want the same kind of product without the same kind of care and artistry that his family’s company puts into every pair of shoes.
The few pairs of handmade shoes I’ve invested in here, excite me more than any other shoes I’ve purchased from malls or large department stores in the past. I think that Spain has spoiled me and turned me into a shoe snob! Hah! But I’ve come to love this art of shoe making . . . there’s a part of me that wants to change my declared major;)
There are so many other equally AWESOME artisan shoemakers in Spain that I love. I wrote this post about Kokua shoes a few months back. And I also love this post about the importance of investing in handmade items that Secondhand Sundays wrote recently.
Provecho!! Tessa Lynn