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Espadrille and sustainable development: the eco-responsible choice

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 Sneakers, sandals, flip-flops, espadrilles or even mules, choosing a pair of shoes in summer is really not easy! In the middle of a heatwave, closed shoes do not necessarily make us dream, especially if they are made of leather and worn with socks... Sandals or mules are not necessarily ideal for wearing to the office, just like flip-flops or any other pair of casual shoes. But if on top of that we are looking for eco-responsible shoes, the dilemma is endless! Fortunately for us, know-how and tradition are often the best recourses to our modern problems, so if you are looking for the most eco-friendly shoe to adopt in summer, the answer is simple: espadrille! Production, whether wool slippers or cotton or linen espadrilles, in Elches, Spain, allows us to create entirely European models. The ethical design guarantees a fair price and lower than that of production on French territory. If you want some advice on how to properly wear and match your espadrilles, here is an article that will interest you: how to dress with espadrilles?


The espadrille: a shoe that spans the centuries!

We find traces of the espadrille throughout history, since -4000 BC in Andalusia or at the feet of the King of Aragon, its origin dates back at least to the beginning of the 12th century. Regardless, these shoes are undoubtedly durable in the sense that this ancestral Basque know-how has survived the centuries and adapted according to fashion and the economic model. We found espadrilles factories in France and Spain in the 19th century, Yves Saint-Laurent completely reinvented the shoe with a rope heel and a ribbon to attach it to the ankle. In the 1980s, as more and more of these factories were relocated to Asia, the Espadrille became an object of Basque know-how. More than a handful of artisans straddling France and Spain master this technique these days... However, the Espadrille remains a symbol of style, with a sweet air of summer and vacation, it is always also popular. It remains the most eco-responsible summer shoe available and we'll explain why!

A durable shoe:

Originally espadrilles consisted of a fabric upper that was sewn directly to a rope sole. This jute rope was particularly resistant and biodegradable, in addition to being light and antistatic. The stitching that connects the upper to the rope sole was spiral and done by hand. The only problem with this method was that apart from the fact that the soles were not very comfortable, the cotton tended to warp and develop holes, which did not make them very durable. It is estimated that in Spain, in the 19th century, children who wore espadrilles in the mines used on average one pair per week! 

Since then, other techniques have been developed to overcome these problems. For example, at Angarde we chose to develop a synthetic rubber and jute braid sole. The advantage of injected rubber is that it is melted directly onto the cotton upper, so the shoe cannot come unstuck or get holes due to the seams. The jute braid is placed in the cast iron mold before the rubber melts to form the sole: thus molded, the jute braid cannot come off. This innovative design of the espadrille sole also gives it greater resistance by limiting wear due to friction.

Additionally, we worked to make the upper more durable as well. To begin with we have doubled the fabric, with a very resistant and antibacterial bamboo interior lining. On the toe of the shoe we added a yoke to reinforce it and prevent it from becoming too deformed.

By ensuring that these espadrilles for men , women and children last over time, we make them more durable and more responsible.

Eco-responsible materials

  • Cotton is the traditional fiber used for the uppers of espadrilles, just as jute is used for the rope sole. Particularly comfortable, soft and supple, it is ideal for summer because it is light and absorbent! In addition, this material is very easy to clean and can be put in the washing machine without deteriorating. Our women's espadrilles are made of cotton or linen just like those for men.
  • Linen, for its part, is an eco-responsible material by definition! In addition to being biodegradable, it is antibacterial, anti-odor and temperature regulating. The linen fiber absorbs moisture and insulates the shoe from both cold and heat. Linen consumes little water and energy, it’s really ideal! 
  • We favor recycled materials. 100% recycled natural materials do not exist, no matter what different brands may say, mainly because recycled fibers are particularly shorter, so they cannot be woven as is, they have to be mixed with fibers virgins. Recycled cotton, for example, must be mixed with virgin cotton fibers. The main advantage being that it reduces water consumption, in fact, cotton is a fiber that consumes a lot of water.
  • Rubber is a great alternative to burlap as it is a high strength material. It does not fear wear, heat or humidity.

All of these materials are therefore ideal for summer shoes to be worn both indoors and outdoors.

Angarde espadrilles

At Angarde, it is important to us to offer a range of products that are eco-responsible with an assertive style. Our eco-responsible Espadrilles are therefore designed to last over time, as much as possible. This includes both colors and a collection of products available for both men and women. It is our opinion that this selection must be respectful of the environment as well as traditional manufacturing standards. Thanks to a French design developed in our offices in Paris, hand in hand with manufacturing expertise in Spain, they are at the cutting edge of fashion and match perfectly with our loungewear and pajamas. All our espadrilles models are available in store, to try on or to purchase at 80 rue d'Aboukir, 75002 Paris. Our store is open every day of the week, except Sunday and Monday. If one of these models for men, women or children is unavailable in store, it can be ordered on our website and delivery is possible to your home or collected from relay points.

And if your Angarde espadrilles end up being too worn or too dirty, we offer to return them to us free of charge so that we can give them a second life by recycling them. To thank you for your gesture, we will offer you -15% on your next Angarde order. From recycled materials to recycling at the end of their life, the loop is thus closed! Keep up to date with all our news by subscribing to our newsletter , we promise a little surprise awaits you in the first email!