Women’s Leather Shoes by Jose Saenz

Women’s leather shoes by Jose Saenz Shoes from Arnedo in La Rioja, Spain, have a very distinct style and attitude. Working in a shoe making town, side by side with well-respected shoe brands like Gaimo Espadrilles, Callaghan, and others, you have to stand out. Otherwise, why do it?

Women's Leather Shoes
Gloria” zipper-embellished leather sandal from the Jose Saenz Shoes SS16 collection. 2.8″ medium-high heel with 1” external platform. Textile lining.

The family-run Jose Saenz Shoes was founded only ten years ago by Jose Saenz, an experienced and ambitious footwear industry professional. His design style is very clean and unadorned, the colors pure.

The “Gloria” sandal above features sleek, glossy red leather, metallic zipper, and a natural rubber sole. The silvery grey stripes on the heel look like layers of solidified metallic dust. A very cool embellishment, without the slightest hint of “cutesiness”.

Women's Leather Shoes
The Jose Saenz factory in Arnedo, La Rioja.

Jose Saenz Shoes style is about confidence, independent fashion sense, and physical well-being. In order to make movement as comfortable as possible, the designers choose materials that are both strong and light. Some materials have been around for a long time, some are of recent development. The brand owns several technological patents. Only genuine high-quality leather is used.

Women's Leather Shoes
The nautical-looking “Adela” leather sneaker by Jose Saenz SS16. Features flexible rubber sole and ghillie lacing.
Women's Leather Shoes
Jose Saenz warehouse in Arnedo, La Rioja.

Jose Saenz has a balanced portfolio of both summer and winter collections.

This past winter I decided that I needed to look for new winter boots that would a) be warm b) not be bulky c) be water proof d) look nice. That’s how I came across the “Paula” boot on the Jose Saenz Shoes website (see post here).

Women's Leather Shoes
Paula” textile lined water proof wedge winter boot by Jose Saenz Shoes.
Women's Leather Shoes
Posing in my new “Paula” boots and the stunning red brand box that they arrived in. On the box the brand mascots: Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf.
Women's Leather Shoes
The boots and the camera shy French bulldog. I love the mid-calf height of the boot. It is very flattering.

I now have a good-looking leather winter boot that is also water proof! How awesome is that? The brand owns the patent for the water proof technology:

Women's Leather Shoes

The lining of the boot is made from really soft and fluffy textile fibers. I love the feel of it.

Women's Leather Shoes
Paula” leather boot by Jose Saenz Shoes, textile lining.

I look forward to a stylish winter, and to walking without feeling that I have pounds and pounds of weight attached to my feet.

Back to the current, Spring-Summer 2016, collection:

Women's Leather Shoes
Gloria” sandal in black crossed straps version. Jose Saenz Shoes SS16.

The surface of the sandal is as smooth as a mirror. It is not typical patent leather though – its glossiness has a transparent quality to it, like the glaze in the oil paintings by the famous Dutch masters.

Women's Leather Shoes
Clara” textured leather wedge sandal with double straps and decorative double buckle. From Jose Saenz Shoes SS16 collection.

The “Clara” sandal comes in many variations. I chose this pinkish beige one. It has beautiful golden colored metallic detailing, like the one-piece double side buckle. The most interesting part is the front leather piece, because of its unusual, eye-catching texture. I’ve noticed that leather surface textures are somewhat of a Jose Saenz specialty. I love the fact that some textures are pure “fantasy” – they don’t exactly reproduce the look of animal or reptile skin.

Women's Leather Shoes
Pilar” sling-back peep-toe mule wedge with a side buckle by Jose Saenz Shoes.

The upper of the “Pilar” wedge mule is made of eye-pleasing bronze-colored metallic full-grained leather. The wedge looks like a rope espadrille type dyed white. In reality, the wedge is made out of light-weight rubber, with strips of synthetic rope glued on for a slightly rustic effect. Jose Saenz does not use actual jute rope wedges for their women’s leather shoes. The designers consider them too heavy.

Women's Leather Shoes
Yamila” spotty leather wedge from the Jose Saenz Shoes SS16 collection.

The spotty pattern of the leather on this wedge is absolutely lovely and also very original. Women’s leather shoes with polka dot patterns are a dime a dozen, but this one is different. The leather itself has a beautifully textured surface as well. There are several other models that have this pattern (a mule, sandals, and a ballerina flat). No wonder! It is a real hit. Like in the previous model, the wedge is high-quality rubber with stylized synthetic rope-like strips on the outside.

Women's Leather Shoes
Yamila” reptile print leather wedge pump by Jose Saenz Shoes SS16.
Women's Leather Shoes
Yamila” platform wedge pump in “old silver“. Wedge height 1.4”, exterior platform 0.6″.

I love the colors on these pumps. And the leather, of course.

Women's Leather Shoes
Pilar” wedge sandal in a fusion of colors. By Jose Saenz Shoes SS16.

This picturesque sandal with the visible brush strokes on the leather reminds me of a modern art painting. Very cool to look at.

There are many more models like this available from the Jose Saenz online shop and the Montreal-based Chaussures Leclerc online shop. Jose Saenz recently started to ship their women’s leather shoes to North America, for a flat fee of 40 Euros. It takes only a couple of days. The price point of women’s leather shoes by Jose Saenz is moderately high, with summer models costing around 100 Euros and winter models up to 150 Euros. The brand website has regular sales and promotions, so keep an eye out for those.

Through my conversations with Fran Saenz, one of the owners, I’ve come to understand the brand mentality better. One of the questions I had for Fran was: “Why the Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf?”. The answer surprised me. Turns out the wolf represents the brand and the Little Red Riding Hood the competitors.

Women's Leather Shoes
Little Red Riding Hood, fashionista and shopaholic. Design: Jose Saenz Shoes.
Women's Leather Shoes
The elegant, but hungry wolf. Image: Jose Saenz Shoes.

Fran explained the meaning behind this: like the wolf, Jose Saenz Shoes is hungry, hungry for success. This makes total sense. You’ve got to be, if you believe in yourself and your product. This is entrepreneurial spirit at its best!

Women's Leather Shoes
The competition is smug:)
Women's Leather Shoes
but the wolf is ready for the challenge.

Despite it being relatively young, the brand has already achieved a lot. Women’s leather shoes by Jose Saenz are popular within Spain, with many bloggers writing about them, and the company is exporting the shoes to several European countries. It is only the matter of time until more women in North America get their hands on Jose Saenz Shoes.




About Me

Ann Mailsi is a writer and social media buff based in the Greater Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada. Her interests include fashion, technology, and nature adventures.

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