11 / 2000

Oman * Men's camel leather house slipper

Oman is an independent sultanate is the south east of the Arabian peninsula. The surface area of Oman is almost twenty times the size of Qatar. The population of about two million inhabitants consists mainly of Arabs. Until the middle of the 19th century, Oman or "Maskat" remained the most important trade and shipping nation in the region. The abolition of slavery, the opening of the Suez Canal and the rise in the use of steamboats were the main reasons for a decline in importance after 1860. Rich merchants used to wear house slippers like the one shown above. The sole is made of several sheets of camel leather and is about 1,5 cm. thick. The insole is softly padded with a felt inner layer surrounded by a raised, leather covered rim. The short vamp is hand sewn to the sole with heavy cotton yarn. The style is clealry influenced by the Portuguese and British dominance of the country in the past.

Research and text by : W.A.H.M. Habraken-Oosterhout-Holland
Illustration by : Colin Ball - Waalwijk - Holland