Avarcas Menorquinas Humble Beginnings: From Nada to Prada

May 04, 2015

As of 2015  avarca sandals are one of the most desirable shoes of the season and one of the highest quality footwear products around. Though they are on the cutting edge of fashion now, they are hardly a "new kid on the block," metaphorically speaking. The rich and storied history of the Avarcas is almost as interesting as the products themselves in many ways.


From Humble Beginnings 

Even though avarcas leather sandals have blossomed into a world renowned footwear solution for women and men who wish to wear comfy sandals but want to be able to stay stylish and chic at the same time, they did not begin life with that goal in mind. Instead, Avarcas have a much more humble beginning: they were born into this world as the footwear choice of farmers in Menorca, Spain, way back in the 19th century.


 When you try to picture the most beautiful, small island that you can think of filled with crystal clear waters, beautiful beaches and breathtaking country sides, the image that you're envisioning probably resembles Menorca, Spain. Located in the Mediterranean Sea, Menorca is one of the smaller Balearic Islands. With a population of just 94,000 people, Menorca has always been a land of innovation and entrepreneurs. It's a place where culture, tradition and true craftsmanship collide to form a location that is truly unlike any other. These properties, along with its tight knit, family run style, make it obvious why something as revolutionary as the Avarcas sandals were born there.


To say that working on your feet all day under the scorching heat of the sun on a geographically friendly island is difficult is something of an understatement. In order to have the stamina that they needed to do their jobs properly and provide for their families, the farmers of Menorca typically used fabric torn from bags to protect their feet all day long. The main benefit of this was that the fabric was both breathable and cool, two qualities that became increasingly important as those warm months of the year dragged on.



Photo courtesy Centre Artesanal de Menorca

The fabric may have allowed them to keep their feet cool, but it did little to protect these hard working men from other obstacles of the day. The areas that they were working in were covered in sharp rocks, weeds and twigs, for example, which at best made their jobs more difficult and at worst exposed them to serious injury.

When the first motor vehicle rolled into Menorca in the early years of the 20th century, innovation began to take hold. These men realized that the worn wheels of cars would make an ideal material to complement the footwear they were already using. When you combined the hard, versatile properties of the rubber and the breathable, cool qualities of the torn fabric bags, you arrived at something that remained largely functional and comfortable all day long.


As with any true artist, however, the craftsmen that originated the product that would come to be called the Avarcas sandal were not yet finished. Any proper craftsman can tell you that they will not be satisfied until their work is done - and their work is never done. The lessons learned in the past are ones that can be used to create the advancements and improvements of the future - another recurring theme in the history of the Menorcan people. Cobblers on the island continued to strive towards creating a footwear solution that was more comfortable than before, more durable than ever and more fashionable than they could have ever dreamed.


 If you had to pick two places on Earth that were polar opposites from a geographical standpoint, Menorca and the United States would be logical choices. People wearing Avarcas in the US certainly didn't need the type of protection from rocks, twigs and other elements that those in Spain did. This allowed craftsmen to take the Avarcas in a bold new direction - they could now focus on doing for fashion what they did for foot protection by injecting an unparalleled sense of style into the sandals.


The Avarcas Look


They say that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery - in the case of the Avarcas, that may very well be true. If you need an example of the undeniable impact that Avarcas have made on the fashion industry in the last few decades, look no farther than companies like Prada. Prada has recently released a line of flat leather slingback sandals that bear more than a passing resemblance to genuine Avarcas. 


Photo courtesy of Prada  $395


The Avarcas Touch


Buying avarcas sandals handmade in Menorca is a decision that brings with it a few key benefits that can't be ignored. First and foremost, you can guarantee that you're getting a product that is made from only the highest quality materials and a superior level of craftsmanship, which is always the most important consideration to make. You know that you're purchasing a product with a design that has been tried, tested and perfected over 100+ years of use into the durable, comfortable solution that we have today. Not only that, but Avarcas are clearly one of the rarest fashion trends of all: one with true staying power.


Avarca sandals by Mibo Avarcas in Taupe $79


Finally, by buying original Avarcas made in Menorca, you know that you're doing your part to support local artisans with your hard earned money. You aren't giving your support to a large corporation that doesn't need it. These companies usually don't thrive on innovation. They don't strive to bring you the highest quality product that you can depend on for years to come. They get inspired something that was created by a true artist, slap their corporate logo on it.

Avarcas Sandals by Castell Avarcas  $89


By buying original Avarcas, you know that you're getting the genuine article and that your support will go towards furthering innovation in regards to avarcas sandals for generations to come.

Who is next Chanel...LV.....Only time will tell and we are flattered for this. 

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