The most popular Mediterranean summer shoes are simple wide strap sandals – sandals made of two parallel or crossing straps of leather. Wide strap sandals come flat or with a small heel or wedge. Simplicity is key, but there is a difference between the austere Birkenstock type sandal, for example, and the wide strap sandal so loved in Spain. The Spanish version is a versatile summer staple that goes with practically anything and can be worn anywhere where open toe shoes are appropriate. Wide strap sandals are very good for traveling around in hot Spanish summer.
The Homers brand of Menorca is known for its very fine quality shoes, made with impeccable taste. They have that refined Balearic feel. Prices hover around 200 Euros. Available throughout Europe and beyond.
The Art Company is based in La Rioja, north central Spain. La Rioja is a fast growing footwear manufacturing cluster, known for its cool designs and a strong emphasis on sustainable production.
The platform of these wide strap sandals consists of rubber and EVA, a dense foam that is a good and durable shock absorber. Many high quality Spanish brands use EVA in their designs. The straps are made of long-lasting and hard-wearing vachetta leather.
The beauty of these Art Company sandals lies in their soft, but resilient leather and their minimalist aesthetic. They almost remind me of pilgrim sandals. I would gladly take them on my next pilgrimage! Their “mixed” style – one wider strap at the front and two narrower crossing straps at the ankle – makes them look less austere, though.
The Magro Cardona is a very elegant urban style wide strap sandal with a narrower buckled ankle strap.
Here is the platform version:
“Veronica” cross strap sandal by Paloma Barceló is pure rustic chic inspired by traditional Spanish folk arts and crafts. It features two wide off-white textile straps with a primitive design pattern and a slender, buckle-fastened black leather back strap. Paloma Barceló designers have a great feel for primitive art and for showcasing the skills of Spanish artisans – just look at that stunning two-tone woven espadrille platform.
Here is a pair of wide strap sandals (cross strap style) by the Zaragoza area based firm AGARÉ. I owe several pairs of shoes by this firm and they are all excellent and moderately priced. Their website delivers to North America (import charges apply). Recently they started using vegan “leather” – a plant-derived material that feels like leather and is ecologically friendly in production.
What do you think of this line up of these wide strap sandals Made in Spain? Happy summer travels!