10 / 2003

Portugal - Olhão - Fisherwoman’s clog-shoes

The most southern region of Portugal is called "Algarve" and borders on the Gulf of Cadiz. The fisherwomen along the coastline are traditionally dressed in black. Their long dresses run almost to the ground. Their shoes however can be quite colourful, while the design is unique. The moccasin-style upper is braided from strands of black or grey wool. Coloured strips of cloth are interwoven on the toe-part and along the top of the heel-quarters. Rabbit fur is added on the instep for further decoration. A strip of leather is hand-stitched only to the toe-part. Later on, the shoe is attached to a wooden sole as shown above, with an extra leather strap for re-enforcement. It allows the wearer to easily flex the foot while walking on a stiff wooden sole.

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