The Ultimate Guide to Espadrilles: History, Styles, and How to Wear Them

The Ultimate Guide to Espadrilles: History, Styles, and How to Wear Them

Espadrilles are as practical as they are chic, maintaining their profile as lightweight, breathable shoes that are perfect for warm weather. Moreover, they come in a variety of styles to fit any fashion sense and offer different levels of comfort, making them a summer staple in any French woman’s closet, and hopefully yours too!

History of Espadrilles

Espadrilles have been around for centuries and originated in the Pyrenees Mountains of Spain and France. These shoes were initially worn by peasants and farmers as a comfortable, affordable option for working in the fields.

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They were made of simple materials like canvas or cotton and featured a distinctive woven jute sole. Over time, espadrilles became more fashionable, and designers began incorporating new materials and styles.

In the 20th century, espadrilles became popular with artists and intellectuals, who embraced their bohemian appeal. Today, espadrilles are a staple of summer fashion, and you can find them in a variety of colors, patterns, and materials.

Styles of Espadrilles

One of the best things about espadrilles is the variety of styles available. You can find espadrille flats, sandals, wedges, and even sneakers.

The classic espadrille features a canvas or cotton upper and a woven jute sole, but you can also find espadrilles with leather, suede, or denim uppers.

The variety of styles makes it possible for you to find espadrilles with a wedge if you are someone who likes to add some height as you might with heels, or flats if you prefer optimal comfort.

The range of styles also means that the range of options are extended to what you can wear with them in terms of clothing.

Espadrille flats are perfect for casual occasions and can be worn with shorts, jeans, or sundresses, while espadrille sandals are a great option for a beach day or poolside lounging.

My personal favorite as a petite person are espadrille wedges, which are perfect for dressing up an outfit and can be worn with maxi dresses or skirts.

shopping for espadrilles image

How to Wear Espadrilles

Now that you know about the different styles of espadrilles, let’s talk about how to wear them. One of the great things about espadrilles is their versatility. You can dress them up or down and wear them for any occasion.

For a casual look, pair espadrille flats with shorts or cropped jeans. Add a basic t-shirt or tank top for a simple but stylish outfit.

If you want to dress up a bit, try espadrille wedges with a maxi dress or skirt. This look is perfect for a summer wedding or garden party.

Espadrille sandals are a great option for a day at the beach or pool. Pair them with a swimsuit and cover-up for a comfortable, beachy look.

You can also wear espadrilles with a sundress or romper for a cute and effortless outfit.

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Shopping for Espadrilles

If you’re looking to add espadrilles to your shoe collection, there are plenty of options to choose from. Top designers like Chanel and Saint Laurent offer high-end espadrilles with luxurious materials and designs.

If you’re on a budget, you can still find affordable espadrilles at all kinds of stores, ranging from department stores like Nordstrom (and Nordstrom Rack) to J.Crew and H&M.

When shopping for espadrilles, you’ll want to consider the material, style, and fit. Look for shoes with high-quality materials that will last through the summer.

Choose a style that fits your needs, whether that’s a flat, sandal, or wedge. And make sure to try on a few sizes to find the perfect fit.

Here are some of my favorite styles I’ve rounded up for you to take a look at:

Espadrilles have remained a timeless fashion staple for centuries, evolving from practical shoes for farmers to fashionable footwear for everyone. With their versatility in style and materials, whether you’re looking for a casual or dressy look, espadrilles are the perfect addition to your summer shoe collection.

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