A pink suede moccasin sounds very appealing, doesn’t it? I featured a classic fuchsia colored soft leather moccasin by Pons Quintana not too long ago and it’s very, very pretty. This one is by Abarca Shoes – a brand that takes functional masculine-style everyday shoes and brings them down to a very basic level, with astonishingly great results. The brand’s core product line consists of espadrille base bluchers with simple and minimal lacing. They also make sandals and slip-on styles. For the uppers, they use cotton, suede-type leather, and raffia, a natural material that I absolutely love in footwear.
Shoes by Abarca have already attracted a great deal of attention in Europe and beyond – especially from those who appreciate informal, unisex style artisan footwear that is also sustainably produced. Turns out Giorgio Armani himself is a fan!
To be honest, I did not expect to find a moccasin in their collection. I was also very surprised to find such a seductively girly one. The color literally makes my mouth water, because it reminds me of a strawberry smoothie. The designers, it turns out, were thinking of bubble gum. No matter – every time I look at this pink suede moccasin a big, happy grin comes across my face. Rarely do color and material go so well together in a shoe.
This yummy-looking moccasin has a nice, compact shape. The thick hand-sewn espadrille base adds sturdiness and elevation. In short, this moc/espadrille would light up a variety of summer outfits.
The pink suede moccasin is priced at 88€ on the Abarca website, a reasonable price for a hand-made product created by experienced artisans. It is definitely going on my wish list.
Abarca Shoes is a young company from Murcia, a region in south-eastern Spain known for its excellent artisan traditions. (Espartéame, a brand that makes great decorative pieces out of esparto grass, is also from there). Being a young, artisan-centered brand, I imagine that product volumes are not very high, so the shoes available through the website get sold out fast. If you happen to be in Madrid, you can visit the Abarca Shoes store at Calle del Almirante, 8, in the trendy Chueca neighborhood.
The brand’s founder, Pedro Martínez-Abarca, is artistically minded and likes to collaborate with artists and artisans in Spain and around the world. Recently, their blog featured a visit to a violin-making workshop that was part of the photo shoot for a new collection. Through a fortuitous encounter, the brand also created a capsule collection for both men and women in collaboration with Matsao Tometuka, a Japanese textile artist. During a visit to a Japan, Martínez-Abarca and some colleagues attended Tokyo‘s most important textile market. In a small street lined with traditional wooden houses, they saw an elderly artisan at work painting on a cotton canvas. They liked his style and struck up a conversation via a translation app.
You can check out women’s espadrille bluchers in Tometuka‘s colorful abstract calligraphic style here.
Stay tuned for other news about Abarca Shoes!