Castañer, based in Girona, Catalonia, has a shoe-making resumé that goes all the way back to the 18th century. In 1927 Luis Castañer and his cousin Tomas Serra started making espadrilles – the traditional Spanish farm (and soldier) shoe. In the late 60s, with the arrival on the scene of Isabel Castañer, the founder’s daughter, the espadrille was reinvented as a fashion item. Now this former worker’s shoe was gracing the runways of Paris for designers like Yves Saint-Laurent and the feet of many a celebrity.
Two Castañer espadrilles created for YSL in the 70s.
Image courtesy El Pie Desnudo Blog.
In addition to the company’s line for men, women, and children, Castañer has a range of accessories and each summer launches a bridal collection with striking total white designs. The company sells through its own stores in Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, Marbella, Seville and Paris, as well as its online shop. It currently operates through multi-brand retailers in more than 35 countries in Europe, Asia and America, and exports account for 80% of turnover. Italy is its main market, followed by Japan and France. Exclusive PoS include Le Bon Marché and Galeries Lafayette in Paris, and Tokyo’s new shopping center Lumine Yurakucho.