Barcelona Photoblog: shoes
Showing posts with label shoes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shoes. Show all posts

December 04, 2012

Stick Dancers or Bastoners: Anklet with Bells Detail

Bastoners or Stick dancers shoes detail

Catalan folklore feeds on ancient traditions lost in the common past of Mediterranean countries. Stick dance (Cat. Ball de Bastons) was documented for the first time in Catalonia in XII a.d. and then more frequently after XVIII but it has always been part of this region's history besides the fact that it came either from the Greeks, some parts of Asia or even other regions in Europe. The exact origin is uncertain. In the Basque country this dance is very extended as well for example and each region has their own peculiarities when it comes to dresses, sticks or ways of dancing. I am not going to enter into that. Maybe talking about Bastoners or stick dancers as they are today, organized in groups or colles as they have been for the last three centuries according to historical records is easier. To begin with, let me say that there are more than 100 colles all over Catalonia perhaps and about fifty are grouped under the direction of Coordinadora de Ball de Bastons de Catalunya. They all have their own history that is normally linked to the town or neighborhood in which they live. The feet you see in the image, adorned with bells (Cat. picarols) sewn into this piece of cloth called camal or turmellera belong to a stick dancer from a group called Bastoners de Gràcia. I have more pictures of this colla to be posted here. I just want to add for the moment that these colles may be made up of 8,10,12 or 16 dancers. One of them carries a flag with their symbols and the name of the group and usually they also have that name or badge embroidered in their clothes. They carry handkerchiefs around their necks and a colorful waistband over white pants and shirts. Besides they wear espadrilles (Cat. espardenyes). More to know soon.

March 16, 2011

Shoe Shopping in Barcelona

Shoe Shopping in Barcelona [enlarge]

Barcelona shops have been evolving from a small commerce model with scarce impact in the international arena into a more powerful network of famous brands both foreign and local which have chosen the downtown area to promote and sell their products. Passeig de Gracia for example has become the most expensive street in Barcelona and Spain partly because of the stores established along this main artery  and the success of the real state business before the crisis. I never quite understood how this process goes but money calls more money. The square meter price has skyrocketed in this part of town so only the richest can resist, the shops exhibit almost unaffordable merchandise but still somebody comes and buys it, mainly tourists with higher purchasing power and the crème de la crème of our society. Of course, you can make an exception one day and not all of them are jewelries. I guess this was not the topic that best fitted the shoe shop in the image. In fact there are many trendy and chic Barcelona shops offering attractive stuff for a reasonable price where poor mortals like us can find relief and satisfy our buying anxiety.

June 12, 2008

Espadrilles: Spanish Alpargatas or Catalan Espardenyes

espardenyes, espadrilles or alpargatas

es·pa·drille (sp-drl) n. A shoe usually having a fabric upper part and a sole made of a flexible material, such as rope or rubber. The term espadrille is French and derives from espardenya, which derives from espart, the Catalan name for esparto [from Latin spartum] , a tough, wiry Mediterranean grass used in making rope. Espadrilles have been made in Catalonia since the 14th century at least. Here is a good place to buy yourself some comfortable espardenyes.
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